Media January–March 2007
|News Release: February 15, 2007||View Printable PDF Version|
|Docket Number: RM07-9, IN07-07 & AD07-10|
Commission to access the adequacy of financial forms data; acts to ensure compliance with reporting requirements
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, seeking to assess whether its financial forms collect relevant financial information critical to the Commission's jurisdictional activities, today launched an inquiry into whether or not revisions are needed to the Commission's various financial forms. In two other actions, the Commission ordered 14 companies to explain why they have failed to file required financial forms, and eliminated the capability to mark data as "privileged" in electronic submissions of financial forms.
Chairman Joseph T. Kelliher said: "The Commission needs accurate and complete financial information about regulated companies in order to discharge our responsibility to set rates. The Notice of Inquiry comes on the heels of an extensive outreach effort, and will help us determine whether we need to revise our financial forms. In particular, it is essential that complainants seeking changes in natural gas pipeline and storage rates have access to public information that provides a sufficient basis for a complaint."
In a Notice of Inquiry, the Commission is seeking comment on whether or not changes or additions are necessary to the financial information reported in quarterly and annual report forms, FERC Form Nos. 1, 1-F, 2, 2-A, 3-Q, 6 and 6-Q.
The notice asks for comment on the following questions:
- Do the financial forms provide sufficient data to permit an evaluation of a filers' jurisdictional rates?
- What additional data is needed to conduct such an evaluation?
- Do the financial forms provide sufficient data to determine revenues attributable to the sale of excess fuel retention? If not, what additional data is needed to make such an evaluation?
- Is the information included in the financial forms sufficient to audit formulary rates?
- Should the Commission require reporting of information on demand response initiatives (interruptible, load control, etc.) including demand and peak demand impacts, associated costs and savings, and the number of advanced meters installed?
- How will additional data be useful to users of the financial forms?
- How burdensome would any requirements for additional data be to filers of financial forms?
- Are there specific reporting requirements that are no longer necessary or unduly burdensome that should be deleted?
- What technical revisions, if any, need to be made to financial forms?
- Should the Commission require filers to provide notification when their total sales or transactions fall below the minimum thresholds established in the Commission's regulations so they are no longer subject to these filing requirements?
- Should the Commission require a showing of good cause before granting an extension of time in which to file the required forms?
- Are these concerns of sufficient importance to warrant a rulemaking and, if so, what rules should the Commission promulgate?
Comments are due 30 days after publication in the Federal Register with reply
comments due 60 days after publication in the Federal Register.
In a related show-cause order, the Commission gave 14 companies 30 days to explain why they have not filed various financial forms or required certified public accountant (CPA) reports. The Commission noted that the financial information in these forms and CPA reports is necessary to carry out its regulatory responsibilities. The companies would avoid any penalty if they file their delinquent forms and CPA reports within the next 30 days, the Commission said.
Chairman Kelliher observed: "Compliance with our financial form filing requirements is important because the timely collection of current and accurate financial data is necessary for the Commission to carry out its regulatory responsibilities pertaining to the electric utility, natural gas, and oil pipeline industries. We enforce these filing requirements, and violation of the filing requirements is subject to civil penalties."
In a third order, the Commission eliminated, effective immediately, the ability to mark financial forms data as "privileged" in electronic financial forms submissions. This action is consistent with the Commission's longstanding policy that financial information be public. The current software used by filers of Forms Nos. 1, 2, 2-A and 3-Q allows such a designation to be made. The Commission-provided software will be updated to eliminate this option.
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