Electric utility regulation; energy efficiency standard. (SB354)

Introduced By

Sen. John Bell (D-Chantilly)

Progress

Introduced
Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law

Description

Electric utility regulation; energy efficiency standard. Requires Dominion Energy Virginia (DEV) and American Electric Power (AEP) to achieve incremental net annual savings in accordance with a schedule that starts in 2021, when savings are required to be at least 0.35 percent of the average annual energy retail sales by that utility in the three preceding calendar years, and increases the level of required savings until 2027 and thereafter, when savings are required to be at least two percent of the utility's average annual energy retail sales in the three preceding calendar years. The measure requires the utilities to retain an independent, qualified third-party evaluator to determine the utility's incremental net annual savings and other benefits of the program. The measure requires the State Corporation Commission, for any year that a utility meets the annual energy efficiency standard, to allow for the additional recovery of a margin on its program's operating expenses through a rate adjustment clause that provides the utility with a margin equal to the general rate of return on common equity. The Commission is directed to award an additional 20 basis points for each 0.1 percent of annual savings in excess of the required amount of savings, with a cap on total performance incentive awards in any year of 10 percent of the utility's total energy efficiency spending in that year. The measure also (i) increases the portion of the approved costs of certain utility energy efficiency programs that are required to be allocated to programs designed to benefit low-income, elderly, and disabled individuals from five percent to 15 percent of the approved costs of such programs and adds veterans to be benefited from such programs; (ii) requires the energy efficiency stakeholder process established for the purpose of providing input and feedback on the development of electric utilities' energy efficiency programs to include the participation of certain Commission personnel who participate in approval and oversight of utility efficiency programs; (iii) directs the Commission to increase the utility's rates to recover for revenue reductions related to energy efficiency programs if the revenue reductions have caused the utility, during the test period or periods under review, to earn more than 50 basis points below a fair combined rate of return on its generation and distribution services or, for any test period commencing after December 31, 2012, for DEV and after December 31, 2013, for AEP, more than 70 basis points below a fair combined rate of return on its generation and distribution services; (iv) allows certain large general service customers to avoid participation in energy efficiency programs and to avoid paying for the costs of such programs through a rate adjustment clause upon receiving an exemption from the Commission; and (v) provides that certain energy efficiency pilot programs may be deemed to be in the public interest. Read the Bill »

Outcome

Bill Has Failed

History

DateAction
01/06/2020Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/08/20 20104635D
01/06/2020Referred to Committee on Commerce and Labor
01/13/2020Impact statement from SCC (SB354)
01/23/2020Assigned C&L sub: Energy
02/09/2020Stricken at request of Patron in Commerce and Labor (15-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)

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