Committee on Consumer Affairs
Committee on Critical Infrastructure
Committee on Electricity
Committee on Energy Resources and Environment
Committee on Gas
Committee on International Relations
Committee on Telecommunications
Committee on Water
Subcommittee on Education and Research
Subcommittee on Supplier and Workforce Diversity
Staff Subcommittee on Consumer Affairs
Staff Subcommittee on Critical Infrastructure
Staff Subcommittee on Electricity
Staff Subcommittee on Electric Reliability
Staff Subcommittee on Energy Resources and the Environment
Staff Subcommittee on Executive Management
Staff Subcommittee on Gas
Staff Subcommittee on Law
Staff Subcommittee on Telecommunications
Task Force on Innovation
Task Force on Military Workforce Development
Task Force on Natural Gas Access and Expansion
Education and Research
Energy Resources and the Environment
Military Workforce Development
Natural Gas Access and Expansion
Supplier and Workforce Diversity
This agenda is subject to change.
|11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.||A1||
The Bold and the Dutiful
Changing economics, ratepayer needs and expectations, renewable resource strategies, and distributed generation are just a few of the hot topics regulators and the utility industry are navigating today. As the pace of innovation and change in the energy landscape accelerates, regulators and utilities are being asked to think more strategically – and more short term. Attendees will hear how regulators and utilities balance their core tenants: reliable service to consumers, affordable rates, sound risk management plans, and transparent processes in this new environment. Participants will answer the following: how do regulators see the balance of innovation vs the level of risk and ratepayer impact? How is innovation utilized without exposing companies to regulatory turbulence? How can innovation be effected without a substantial rate increase? Are these changes needed and cost-effective to the ratepayer?
Moderator: Hon. Brien Sheahan, Illinois
Hon. Nancy Lange, Minnesota
Paul Bonney, Sr. VP, Legal & Regulatory Strategy, Pepco Holdings
Tiffany Menhorn, EnerNOC, Inc., Wholesale Procurement
Lisa Wood, Executive Director, Institute for Electric Innovation
|11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.||A2||
Is A Cyber 9/11 In Our Future?
In August, the President’s National Infrastructure Advisory Council (NIAC) unanimously approved a 45-page report that found the federal government and the private sector are “falling short” in protecting critical systems. The report also states that the nation faces “a pre-9/11-level cyber moment, with a narrow and fleeting window of opportunity to coordinate our resources effectively.”
View/download the text of the report (a PDF).
Moderator: Hon. Gladys Brown, Pennsylvania
Caitlin Durkovich, Leadership, Toffler Associates
Robert H. Mayer, Senior Vice President – Cybersecurity, USTelecom Association
Nick Santillo, Jr.,VP Internal Audit & Chief Security Officer, American Water
|11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.||A3||
Weathering the Storm: Communications Network Resilience
Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, Superstorm Sandy, and the Derecho taught us many lessons. Changes in response time, resilience measures to the network, and mutual assistance procedures were just a few measures examined in some regions. During this session, regulators will discuss how measures implemented from previous experiences impacted recent restoration efforts and timelines and what lessons were learned this time around.
Moderator: Hon. Julie Brown, Florida
Hon. John Clendenin, Virgin Islands
Hon. Mary-Anna Holden, New Jersey
Hon. Gregg Sayre, New York
Hon. DeAnn Walker, Texas
Hon. Stan Wise, Georgia
|11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.||A4||
The Battle for Peak Capacity: Batteries vs. Gas
The United States electric grid is expected to need more peaking capacity resources, both to replace retiring units and to integrate higher levels of variable generation. Natural gas-fired power plants are the dominant technology providing peaking capacity. But for how long? Rapid and significant cost declines in battery energy storage have some proponents arguing that it can substitute for the gas peaking equipment. This session will debate whether battery storage can really compete with gas peakers.
Through an interactive Jeopardy-style experience, attendees will:
Moderator: Hon. Ted Thomas, Arkansas
Mikael Backman, Regional Director, North America, Energy Solutions, Wartsila Corporation
Praveen Kathpal, Vice President, AES Energy Storage
Chris Villarreal, President, Plugged-In Strategies
|11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.||A5||
From the Joneses to the Jetsons! Smart Communities and Infrastructure
If communities are getting “smarter,” regulators must stay ahead of the curve. Utilities are investing in a smarter electric grid that benefits customers and are working on projects in ‘smart communities’ to establish programs to bring more resilient and sustainable options to customers. As the smart technologies advance, industry, stakeholders, regulators, and policymakers should be on the same page.
Attendees will participate in a dynamic discussion that will address:
Moderator: Hon. Odogwu Linton, Maryland
Donna Cooper, President, Pepco Region for PHI
Brigham A. McCown, Nouveau, Inc
Michael Murray, President, Mission:data
David Owens, Retired Executive Vice President, Edison Electric Institute
Russ Vanos, VP Global Software, Services & Smart Cities, ITRON
|1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.||B1||
Power to the Market
The need for traditional sources of baseload electricity has taken the spotlight recently, particularly with the Department of Energy’s filing of a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking directing FERC to "accurately price generation resources necessary to maintain reliability and resiliency." Because coal and nuclear generate half of the nation’s electricity, some believe that these sources are necessary to ensure grid reliability, resilience and fuel diversity. Others believe the concept of baseload is outmoded and challenge the need to modify the rules or market. What is not in dispute is the large amount of traditional baseload generating capacity that has retired with more on the horizon. This panel will discuss: the future role of coal and nuclear; whether reliability and resiliency are being valued now and if not, whether they should be; what attributes should be valued; and what changes, if any, are needed to ensure just and reasonable rates?
Moderator: Hon. Ellen Nowak, Wisconsin
Hon. Kara Brighton, Wyoming
Paul Bailey, CEO, ACCCE
Kathleen Barron, Senior Vice President, Competitive Market Policy, Exelon
Martin (Marty) J. Durbin, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer, API
Steve Herling, Vice President - Planning, PJM
|1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.||B2||
Frenemies and Free Riders
Who doesn’t want a free ride? Utility poles are in place but are they available to anyone? A recommendation from the Federal Communications Commission’s Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee (BDAC) on pole attachments is expected in early November. This report will likely include major changes to the rules governing pole attachments, conduits, and rights-of-way. The report may also suggest pre-emption of State and local authority.
Moderator: Hon. Michael Caron, Connecticut
Hon. Wendy Moser, Colorado
Hon. Karen Charles Peterson, Massachusetts
Allen Bell, Support Manager, Georgia Power
David Don, Vice President, Regulatory Policy, Comcast NBCUniversal
Mitsuko Herrera, Dept. of Technology Services, Montgomery County, Maryland
|1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.||B3||
Charging Ahead: Part II
As sales of electric vehicles continue to rise, commissions are increasingly being presented with proposals from utilities to allow financial recovery for charging infrastructure investments. Building upon last year’s panel, where regulators learned about electric vehicles and rate design, this session will examine developments that have occurred over the last year. Specifically, regulators will learn about recent State commission decisions on whether to finance electric vehicle infrastructure through general customer rates or other means. The application of traditional rate setting concepts, such as fairness to consumers and distribution of benefits, will also be explored.
Moderator: Hon. Rachael Eubanks, Michigan
Hon. Daniel Hall, Missouri
Max Baumhefner, NRDC
Phil Dion, Vice-President, Technology Business Development, AEP
Sandra Mattavous-Frye, People's Counsel, Office of the People's Counsel, District of Columbia
|1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.||B4||
Upstream with A Paddle
The water industry is grappling with challenges that require significant financial investment, technical expertise, and technological innovation. These challenges are exacerbated by widespread fragmentation. There are more than 52,000 community water systems where 83 percent of the water systems serve less than 3,300 people. Many small and mid-sized water utilities lack resources needed to surmount the critical issues they are facing. State legislatures have instituted legislative and regulatory solutions that encourage acquisition of struggling waters systems and incentivize investment. This panel will explore legislative and regulatory options to help ensure that water can be safely, reliably, and affordably provided to consumers.
Attendees will be presented with:
Moderator: Hon. Sadzi M. Oliva, Illinois
Mayor Michael Cherepko, City of McKeesport, PA
Deborah Dewey, President, Indiana American Water
Ellen Tarquinio, Environmental Protection Specialist, EPA
Richard Verdi, Senior Equity Research Analyst-Water, Atwater Thornton
|1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.||B5||
Myth Busters... Family Feud Style
Reliability for wind and microgrids have been put to the test! Wind has earned a reputation for beating to its own drum – but does that make it unreliable from an operator’s perspective? Is a low or no carbon grid possible? Are microgrids a reliability silver bullet? This session will explore some of the research and experiences people in the industry have to share about familiar antidotes to today’s grid issues. Some say that wind is intermittent and therefore unreliable, while an operator may know something different. Some say that a low or no carbon grid is absolutely possible and that we should get a move on it already. Is that reality and what do others have to say about it? Microgrids might be a perfect fit for one campus, but should they be adopted everywhere? This session will break down some of the common, general questions and themes we are hearing.
Welcome to Family Feud. Our goal is to make this educational and entertaining. See our panelists go head to head to guess the top answer from a survey question. The winner gets to pass or play, stake their claim first, or wait and rebut the others' claim. We'll then closeout the board by panelists guessing the rest of the survey answers. Three strikes and the other team can steal the board with a correct guess! Plan to join us for a fun and informative discussion. The winners won't get to play fast money, but they'll have NARUC bragging rights.
Moderator: Hon. Nick Wagner, Iowa
Hon. Michael Huebsch, Wisconsin
Rob Gramlich, President, Grid Strategies, LLC
Bruce Rew, Vice President, Operations, Southwest Power Pool, Inc.
Susan L. Satter, Public Utilities Counsel, Office of Attorney General Lisa Madigan, Illinois
Matthew Wald, Senior Communications Advisor, Nuclear Energy Institute
Don Wingate, Vice President – Utility Sales, Strategic Customers and Microgrid Solutions, Schneider Electric
|9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.||C1||
To Know or Not to Know: That is the Ethical Question
Scenario: A State Right-to-Know (RTK) requester was the Appellant in ongoing litigation he filed against a State utility in a court proceeding. The RTK requester asked the State public utility commission (PUC) for e-mail exchanges between counsel for the PUC and counsel for the utility regarding the PUC’s strategy and participation as amicus curie in that court proceeding, as well as disclose the exchange of draft legal arguments. Because these communications were an attorney-client work product between the Commission’s attorneys and the utility’s counsel and were PUC counsel’s legal strategies and consultations in furtherance of representation of the PUC’s legal interest, those communications were withheld as confidential attorney-client and attorney work product.
The RTK requester appealed and the State Office of Open Records (OOR) ordered the disclosure of the communications. The OOR determined that because no confidentiality agreement existed between the PUC attorneys and the utility’s counsel, and the Commission was only an amicus party, the Commission waived the privilege. OOR created a new separate standard for government attorneys when only the State Supreme Court has jurisdiction over the practice of law. No such requirement of an agreement exists when attorneys share the same litigation position. The OOR also ignored the ethical dilemma placed upon the attorneys by granting the RTK requester and his attorney access to privileged documents that could never be obtained under the Canons of Ethics. The ethical question was also raised for attorneys acting as solicitors for municipal governments, which are subject to the RTK Law in that State.
Hon. David Sweet, Pennsylvania
Rosemary Chiavetta, Secretary, Pennsylvania
|9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.||C2||
Water and Electric Cybersecurity: Stakeholder Perspectives and Partnerships
During this panel we will explore cybersecurity approaches that are being used in the water sector as well as how coordination is conducted with the electric sector, which has common control systems. Speakers will discuss the controls and programs that water companies use to avoid being hacked, including how recent cyber incidents were prevented such as WannaCry, Petya, and more. We will also hear the regulatory perspective on the potential adverse impacts caused by cyber incidents in water and electric systems, including health threats, as well as how these threats are managed at the state level. Lessons from Indiana's recent cross-sector exercise, CritEx, will be shared. Additionally, we will learn about the role that partnerships can play in resiliency and cybersecurity, including lessons learned from Indiana’s strategic approach in developing cross-sector partnerships through the Indiana Executive Council on Cybersecurity.
Moderator: Hon. Sarah Freeman, Indiana
Hon. Mary-Anna Holden, New Jersey
John Lucas, Vice President, Citizens Energy Group
Michael Luu, CIO & VP, Customer Service, California Water Service
Chetrice Mosley, State of Indiana Cybersecurity Program Director
Nick Santillo, VP Internal Audit & CSO, American Water
|9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.||C3||
Oh, What a Beautiful ‘Site’? New Realities in Siting
Multiple State and federal agencies are involved in transmission planning and siting. States are being asked to evaluate non-traditional projects, and economic and reliability projects are being proposed by a number of parties through integrated resource planning and other planning processes. New ways of thinking about electricity resources are affecting traditional transmission planning and siting, cost allocation, and the roles of State officials, utilities, and consumer advocates in these decisions. Siting discussions now include independent transmission owners and multiple local, State, and federal organizations, in addition to traditional utilities.
Moderator: Hon. Betty Ann Kane, District of Columbia
Hon. Ted Thomas, Arkansas
Patrick Donlon, Executive Director, Ohio Power Siting Board and Director, Rates and Analysis, PUCO
Marissa Gillett, Senior Advisor to Chairman Obi Linton, Maryland
Fred Hoover, Senior Program Director, NASEO
Tanya McCloskey, Acting Consumer Advocate for Pennsylvania and Executive Committee Member of NCEP.