Subchapter E. COMPETITIVE SAFEGUARDS


Sec.


54.121.    Purpose.
54.122.    Code of conduct.
54.123.    Transfer of customers to default service.

Authority

   The provisions of this Subchapter E issued under the Public Utility Code, 66 Pa.C.S. § §  501, 502, 504—506, 508, 701, 1301, 1304, 1501, 1502, 1505, 1701—1705, 2101—2107 and 2801—2811, unless otherwise noted.

Source

   The provisions of this Subchapter E adopted July 7, 2000, effective July 8, 2000, 30 Pa.B. 3445, unless otherwise noted.

§ 54.121. Purpose.

 The purpose of these competitive safeguards is to assure the provision of direct access on equal and nondiscriminatory terms to all customers and generation suppliers, prevent discrimination in rates, terms or conditions of service by electric distribution companies, prevent the cross subsidization of service amongst customers, customer classes or between related electric distribution companies and electric generation suppliers, to forbid unfair or deceptive practices by electric generation companies and electric generation suppliers, and to establish and maintain an effective and vibrant competitive market in the purchase and sale of retail electric energy in this Commonwealth.

§ 54.122. Code of conduct.

 Electric generation suppliers and electric distribution companies shall comply with the following requirements:

   (1)  An electric distribution company may not give an electric generation supplier, including without limitation, its affiliate or division, any preference or advantage over any other electric generation supplier in processing a request by a distribution company customer for retail generation supply service.

   (2)  Subject to customer privacy or confidentiality constraints, an electric distribution company may not give an electric generation supplier, including without limitation its affiliate or division, any preference or advantage in the dissemination or disclosure of customer information and any dissemination or disclosure shall occur at the same time and in an equal and nondiscriminatory manner. ‘‘Customer information’’ means all information pertaining to retail electric customer identity and current and future retail electric customer usage patterns, including appliance usage patterns, service requirements or service facilities.

   (3)  An electric distribution company or electric generation supplier may not engage in false or deceptive advertising to customers with respect to the retail supply of electricity in this Commonwealth.

   (4)  Each electric distribution company shall adopt the following dispute resolution procedures to address alleged violations of this section:

     (i)   Regarding any dispute between an electric distribution company or a related supplier, or both, and an electric generation supplier (each individually referred to as a ‘‘party’’ and collectively referred to as ‘‘parties’’), alleging a violation of any of the provisions of this section, the electric generation supplier shall provide the electric distribution company or related supplier, or both, as applicable, a written notice of dispute which includes the names of the parties and customers, if any involved and a brief description of the matters in dispute.

     (ii)   Within 5 days of receipt of the notice by the electric distribution company or related supplier, or both, a designated senior representative of each of the parties shall attempt to resolve the dispute on an informal basis.

     (iii)   If the designated representatives are unable to resolve the dispute by mutual agreement within 30 days of the referral, the dispute shall be referred for mediation through the Commission’s Office of Administrative Law Judge. A party may request mediation prior to that time if it appears that informal resolution is not productive.

     (iv)   If mediation is not successful, the matter shall be converted to a formal proceeding before a Commission administrative law judge, and the prosecuting parties shall be directed to file a formal pleading in the nature of a complaint, petition or other appropriate pleading with the Commission within 30 days or the matter will be dismissed for lack of prosecution. Any party may file a complaint, petition or other appropriate pleading concerning the dispute under any relevant provision of 66 Pa.C.S. (relating to the Public Utility Code).

   (5)  An electric distribution company may not illegally tie the provision of any electric distribution service within the jurisdiction of the Commission to one of the following:

     (i)   The purchase, lease or use of any other goods or services offered by the electric distribution company or its affiliates.

     (ii)   A direct or indirect commitment not to deal with any competing electric generation supplier.

   (6)  An electric distribution company may not provide any preference or advantage to any electric generation supplier in the disclosure of information about operational status and availability of the distribution system.

   (7)  An electric distribution company shall supply all regulated services and apply tariffs to nonaffiliated electric generation suppliers in the same manner as it does for itself and its affiliated or division electric generation supplier, and shall uniformly supply all regulated services and apply its tariff provisions in a nondiscriminatory manner.

   (8)  Every electric distribution company and its affiliated or divisional electric generation supplier shall formally adopt and implement these provisions as company policy and shall take appropriate steps to train and instruct its employes in their content and application.

   (9)  If an electric distribution company customer requests information about electric generation suppliers, the electric distribution company shall provide the latest list as compiled by the Commission to the customer over the telephone, or in written form or by other equal and nondiscriminatory means. In addition, an electric distribution company may provide the address and telephone number of an electric generation supplier if specifically requested by the customer by name. To enable electric distribution companies to fulfill this obligation, the Commission will maintain a written list of licensed electric generation suppliers. The Commission will regularly update this list and provide the updates to electric distribution companies as soon as reasonably practicable. The Commission will compile the list in a manner that is fair to all electric generation suppliers and that is not designed to provide any particular electric generation supplier with a competitive advantage.

   (10)  An electric distribution company or its affiliate or division may not state or imply that any delivery services provided to an affiliate or division or customer of either are inherently superior, solely on the basis of their affiliation with the electric distribution company, to those provided to any other electric generation supplier or customer or that the electric distribution company’s delivery services are enhanced should supply services be procured from its affiliate or division. When an electric distribution company’s affiliated or divisional supplier markets or communicates to the public using the electric distribution company’s name or logo, it shall include a disclaimer stating that the affiliated or divisional supplier is not the same company as the electric distribution company, that the prices of the affiliated or divisional supplier are not regulated by the Commission and that a customer is not required to buy electricity or other products from the affiliated or divisional supplier to receive the same quality service from the electric distribution company. When an affiliated or divisional supplier advertises or communicates through radio, television or other electronic medium to the public using the electric distribution company’s name or logo, the affiliated or divisional supplier shall include at the conclusion of any communication a disclaimer that includes all of the disclaimers listed in this paragraph.

   (11)  An electric distribution company which is related as an affiliate or division of an electric generation supplier or transmission supplier (meaning any public utility that owns, operates, or controls facilities used for the transmission of electric energy) which serves any portion of this Commonwealth; and any electric generation supplier which is related as an affiliate or division of any electric distribution company or transmission supplier which serves any portion of this Commonwealth, shall insure that its employes function independently of other related companies.

Cross References

   This section cited in 52 Pa. Code §  54.186 (relating to default service procurement and implementation plans); 52 Pa. Code §  111.8 (relating to agent identification; misrepresentation); and 52 Pa. Code §  111.14 (relating to notification regarding marketing or sales activity).

§ 54.123. Transfer of customers to default service.

 The following standards apply to the transfer of a retail customer’s electric generation service from an EGS to a default service provider within the meaning of §  54.182 (relating to definitions):

   (1)  An EGS may not transfer a retail customer from its electric generation service to the default service provider without the consent of the default service provider, except in the following situations:

     (i)   Upon Commission approval of the abandonment, suspension or revocation of an EGS license, consistent with § §  54.41 and 54.42 (relating to transfer or abandonment of license; and license suspension; license revocation).

     (ii)   Upon nonpayment by a retail customer for services rendered by the EGS.

     (iii)   To correct an unauthorized or inadvertent switch of a retail customer’s account from default service to an alternative EGS’s service, consistent with §  57.177 (relating to customer dispute procedures).

     (iv)   Upon the normal expiration of contracts.

   (2)  An EGS may initiate transfers in the situations in paragraph (1) through standard electronic data interchange protocols.

   (3)  The Commission may impose a penalty for every retail customer transferred to default service in violation of this section, consistent with 66 Pa.C.S. § §  3301—3316 (relating to violations and penalties).

Source

   The provisions of this §  54.123 adopted September 14, 2007, effective September 15, 2007, 37 Pa.B. 4996.

Cross References

   This section cited in 52 Pa. Code §  54.186 (relating to default service procurement and implementation plans).



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