H.R. 5547 (110th): Consumer Protection and Cost Accountability Act

110th Congress, 2007–2009. Text as of Mar 06, 2008 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO

I

110th CONGRESS

2d Session

H. R. 5547

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

March 6, 2008

(for himself, Mr. Delahunt, Mr. McGovern, and Mr. Michaud) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce

A BILL

To amend the Federal Power Act to ensure that the mission and functions of Regional Transmission Organizations and Independent System Operators include keeping energy costs as low as reasonably possible for consumers, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Consumer Protection and Cost Accountability Act.

2.

Requirements relating to transmission organizations

(a)

Definitions

In this Act:

(1)

Commission

The term Commission means the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

(2)

Lowest reasonable cost

The term lowest reasonable cost means the lowest total delivered cost to consumers consistent with the provision of reliable service.

(3)

Transmission Organization

The term Transmission Organization has the meaning given the term in section 3 of the Federal Power Act (16 U.S.C. 796).

(b)

Rate and charges; schedules; suspension of new rates

Section 205 of the Federal Power Act (16 U.S.C. 824d) is amended by adding at the end the following:

(g)

Requirements relating to Transmission Organizations

(1)

Definition of lowest reasonable cost

In this subsection, the term lowest reasonable cost means the lowest total delivered cost to consumers consistent with the provision of reliable service.

(2)

Consideration of Transmission Organization rates

With respect to determining whether a rate or charge made, demanded, or received (including any rule or regulation promulgated by a Transmission Organization relating to a rate or charge made, demanded, or received) is consistent with each requirement described in subsection (a) or section 206, as applicable, the Commission shall consider whether the rate or charge (including each rule or regulation relating to the rate or charge) would enable the Transmission Organization to provide, or facilitate the provision of, reliable service to consumers at the lowest reasonable cost.

(3)

Consideration of Transmission Organization rate changes

In determining whether any filing by a Transmission Organization to establish or change a rate or charge made, demanded, or received (including any rule or regulation promulgated by a Transmission Organization relating to a rate or charge made, demanded, or received) is consistent with each requirement described in subsection (a), the Commission shall consider whether the rate or charge (including each rule or regulation relating to the rate or charge) would—

(A)

provide consumer benefits that outweigh any anticipated direct or indirect costs to consumers, as demonstrated by a cost-benefit analysis to be submitted by the Transmission Organization to the Commission; or

(B)

have only a de minimus impact on the total delivered costs to consumer.

(4)

Biennial audits

The Commission shall ensure that each Transmission Organization is subject to biennial, independent audits that—

(A)

include—

(i)

an assessment of the performance of the Transmission Organization; and

(ii)

recommendations to lower the costs and improve the performance of the Transmission Organization; and

(B)

are made available to the public.

.

(c)

Annual reports

Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, and annually thereafter, the Commission shall submit to the appropriate committees of Congress a report describing each determination of the Commission with respect to whether each Transmission Organization provides, or facilitates the provision of, reliable service at the lowest reasonable cost to consumers.