Print Program
(Includes content available as of November 2, 2016)

Compiled Agenda

This agenda is subject to change.

Saturday, November 12


Staff Subcommittee on Telecommunications

Location: Flores 7 & 8
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Staff Subcommittee on Telecommunications

9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

Closed Session – States Issues Updates & Planning

10:30 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.

Networking Break

10:45 a.m. - 11:30 a.m

Current Issues:  Reports from NARUC

  • Litigation Report - Brad Ramsay, NARUC
  • Legislative Report - Brian O'Hara, NARUC

Joint Board & NRRI Reports

  • Separations - George Young, Vermont
  • Universal Service - Labros Pilalis, Pennsylvania
  • 706 Joint Conference - Bill Johnston, California
  • NANC - Carolee Hall, Idaho
  • NRRI - Sherry Lichtenberg

Subgroup Reports

  • Consumer Issues - Kerri DeYoung Phillips, Massachusetts
  • Cyber Security - John McClain, Department of Homeland Security
  • Federal Regulation & Legislation - Joe Witmer, Pennsylvania
  • Numbering - Bonnie Johnson, Minnesota
  • State Regulation - Robin Ancona, Michigan
  • Technology & Service Quality - Teresa Ferguson, Colorado
11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Lunch (on own)
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.

Panel I:  Business Data Services - Is the “Long-Broken”               Regulatory Regime Fixed?

After first opening a proceeding in 2004, a long awaited order, rules, and further proposed rulemaking have been circulated by the FCC Chairman with a proposed “fix” to the regulatory regime that governs the multi-billion dollar market for Business Data Services (BDS). Previously labeled “special access,” these enterprise services enable dedicated network connections for mobile phone service backhaul, large businesses, governments, and community anchor institutions.  This panel will explore whether or not the new framework will indeed support new and emerging competition through “light handed” and “targeted” regulation and whether additional regulatory adjustments are necessary.

Moderator: Sherry Lichtenberg, NRRI

Lisa Hensley Eckert, Director of Public Affairs, CenturyLink

Mike Skrivan, VP Regulatory, Fairpoint Communications

Pam Hollick, Associate General Counsel, State Public Policy, Level 3

Roy Lathrop, Senior Director, State Government Affairs, NCTA

2:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Panel II:  Network Reliability/Outages – The State Experience

The rapid explosion of wireless, I/P and other technologies has created an incredible variety of voice, data and video communications capabilities, but only through a highly complex web of interconnected networks and services.  These intertwined networks and services have introduced significant new challenges for policy makers, regulators, and telecom companies in ensuring public safety and consumer satisfaction through end-to-end network reliability, outage reporting and consumer communications. This panel of State PUC Staff experts will discuss the issues being faced in their states, whether recent FCC efforts have been successful and what more could be done between government and industry to address the issues.

Moderator: Lynn Notarianni, Colorado

Bill Johnston, California

Cullen Robbins, Nebraska

Rebecca Beaton, Washington

3:30 p.m. - 3:45 p.m. Networking Break
3:45 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Resolution Introduction - Industry Input


Subcommittee on Education and Research

Location: Studio
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Closed Executive Session

Working lunch for Committee and Staff Subcommittee members only

1:00 p.m. - 1:05 p.m.

Welcome and Introductions

Hon. John (Butch) Howard, Subcommittee Chair - South Carolina 

1:05 p.m. - 1:10 p.m.

Approval of Minutes

1:10 p.m. - 1:20 p.m.

Commission Chair Roundtable Update

Presenter: Michelle Malloy, Sr. Director of Meetings and Member Services, NARUC

1:20 p.m. - 1:25 p.m. University Relationships - WPUI Liaison
1:25 p.m. - 1:35 p.m.

NRRI Update

Presenter: Rajnish Barua, Executive Director, NRRI

1:35 p.m. - 1:40 p.m.

Certificate of Continuing Regulatory Education (CRRE) Update

Review certificate criteria, marketing materials, and enrollment statistics, as well as discuss strategies going forward.  Written report provided by:

Presenter: Jan Beecher, Director, Institute of Public Utilities, MSU

1:40 p.m. - 1:50 p.m.

Update on Subcommittee Projects

  • 2017 Summer Internships (NARUC)
  • New Commissioner Regulatory Orientation
  • Other

Presenter: Erin Hammel, Director, International Programs, NARUC

1:50 p.m. - 2:05 p.m.

Review of Applications for Support

  • Online training concept (Univ. of Tulsa application)
  • Applications for Consideration

Presenter: Erin Hammel, Director, International Programs, NARUC

2:05 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.

Scholarships Report

Presenter: Sue Daly, Chair, Staff Subcommittee on Education and Research

2:15 p.m. - 2:25 p.m.


Presenter: Hon. Jack Betkoski, III, Vice Chairman, Connecticut

2:25 p.m. New Business

Sunday, November 13


Registration Open (8:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.)

Location: Flores 6


Staff Subcommittee on Consumer Affairs

Location: Flores 6
9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Here Comes the Sun

While the Beatles’ song chimed that “It’s all right” -- is it?  This discussion explores the growing impacts of residential solar on utility customer service, providing a snapshot of attitudes held by residential customers overall, and by solar adopters.  Why and how do customers choose solar?  How important are perceived environmental benefits versus savings potential?  How are utilities handling their evolving relationship with solar customers?  What are the impacts on call centers? Could the growing importance of customer service change customer perceptions of traditional generation and distribution?  Join the discussion on the ever-changing customers’ attitudes, since we know, “The sun will come out tomorrow.”

Jamie Wimberly, Chief Executive Officer, DEFG, LLC

Daniel Gabaldon, Director, Enovation Partners

10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Networking Break
10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. 

Beyond Lifeline Reform: Discussion of Other Existing Low-Income Consumer Programs in the Market

(Joint session with the Staff Subcommittee on Telecommunications)

Many rural and low-income customers now have access to broadband through new and modified provider-sponsored programs. Differences in participation qualifications, services, and program successes and failures will be discussed. Will Lifeline and/or other low-income programs be a broadband lifesaver? Join the discussion to find out.

Moderator: Phil Boyle, Vice-Chair, Subcommittee on Consumer Affairs, Oregon

Al Lubeck, Public Policy Director, CenturyLink

David Bergman, Counsel, NASUCA

Don Laub, Vice President of Regulatory Affairs, Comcast

Mark Brown, Vice President & Counsel, Government Affairs, Charter Communications

View Presentations 


Staff Subcommittee on Critical Infrastructure

Location: Flores 3
9:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

The NARUC Critical Infrastructure Subcommittee will have a small group, closed meeting to discuss any topics of interest. There is no formal agenda. The discussion will be led by Lynn Constantini from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities. 


Staff Subcommittee on Gas

Location: Flores 1 & 2
9:15 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.

GTI Updates

PresenterRon Edelstein, Director, Regulatory and Government Relations, Gas Technology Institute

9:30 a.m. - 9:45 a.m.

NRRI Update & Regional Regulatory Updates

Presentation of the latest research activitiesat NRRI, to be followed by an "open mike" discuscussion of relevant natural gas related news

Moderator: Andreas D. Thanos, Chair Staff Subcommitte on Gas

Presenter: Ken Costello, NRRI

9:45 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.

Managing Price Volatility in the Competitive Retail Natural Gas Market

Gas retail competition has become a reality in most of the country.  Over the past 100 years or so, natural gas customers became accustomed to the “regulated price” provided to them by the gas utility. 
As consumers move to competitive suppliers, these suppliers have to compete with each other in terms of service and pricing, but also with the established safety of the regulated utility prices. 

Although gas commodity prices are at the lowest they have been in decades, the potential for an uptick, whether seasonal or otherwise, is always likely.  Any price fluctuation, particularly an upward move, will affect the consumer, the supplier and ultimately the regulatory commission.  It is therefore important , that we all have a good understanding of “what is available out there.”

The panelists will discuss the near-term outlook and expectations for natural gas based on production trends and regional transportation and storage capabilities. It will review the tools used by the respective companies to ensure that their customers are protected, to the extent possible, from the unpredictability of the market.

Moderator: Andreas D. Thanos, Chair, Staff Subcommittee on Gas

Jennifer Fordham, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs, Natural Gas Supply Association

Ron Cerniglia, Director Government & Regulatory Affairs, Direct Energy

Mark Reese, Vice President, U.S. Gas Supply, Just Energy

Bob Anderson, Executive Director, Committee of Chief Risk Officers

10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

U.S. DOE: Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Furnaces

(Joint session with the Staff Subcommittee on Energy Resources and the Environment)

On September 23, 2016 the US Department of Energy issued a Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (SNOPR) on the Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Furnaces. 

According to the DOE, the SNOPR responds to comments received on the (9/14/15) NOPR and Notice of Data Availability (NODA) and is making a modified proposal regarding amended energy conservation standards for residential furnaces. The notice, further, requests comment on the SNOPR's proposed standards and associated analyses and results.  The DOE will accept comments through November 22, 2016.

This SNOPR has already raised some controversy, and a robust discussion on the merits of the DOE proposal.

The panel will address the availability of technologies, and discuss the level of benefits that can accrue the environment in general and consumers in particular.  

Karen R. Olesky, Chair, Staff Subcommittee on Energy Resources and the Environment

Andreas D. Thanos, Chair, Staff Subcommittee on Gas

Ron, Edelstein, Director, Regulatory and Government Relations, Gas Technology Institute

Elizabeth Noll, Legislative Director, Energy & Transportation,  Natural Resources Defense Council

David Weaver, Vice President - Enterprise External Affairs, Southern Company Gas


Staff Subcommittee on Pipeline Safety (closed)

Location: Flores 6
1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Agenda TBA


Subcommittee on Pipeline Safety (closed)

Location: Flores 6
1:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Agenda TBA


Staff Subcommittee on Rate Design

Location: Flores 5
9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

We Want Three States!:  California, Nevada, and Oregon Staff Discussion

This session will feature a discussion amongst staff from the California Public Utilities Commission, Nevada Public Utilities Commission, and Oregon Public Utility Commission.  Come hear the latest on rate design and related issues as staff from each of these commissions update the Subcommittee, share information, and gain a better understanding of what is going on at the staff level on the many issues facing the commissions.  

Moderator: Chris Villarreal, Minnesota

Paul Phillips, California

Stephen St. Marie, California 

Anne-Marie Cuneo, Nevada

Lance Kaufman, Oregon

10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Break
10:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Show Me the Numbers: A Framework for Assessing Distributed Solar Policies

Tim Woolf, Vice President, Synapse Energy Economics

This session will feature a presentation on a recently released report by Synapse on a framework for assessing distributed solar that addresses all issues qualitatively, with a focus on distributed generation development, cost-effectiveness, and cost-shifting.  

11:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

(Closed Session) Manual on Distributed Energy Resources Rate Design and Compensation

With the final version of the Manual now released, attend this session to hear details about the final version, including what's changed, what's new, and what's next.  Hear from several members of the drafting team on the role and purpose of the Manual, and how this might be used by a commission.


Subcommittee on Utility Marketplace Access

Location: Flores 4

9:00 a.m. - 9:10 a.m.


Welcome and Opening Remarks

Hon. Nikki Hall, UMA Chairwoman, South Carolina

9:10 a.m. - 10:10 a.m.

Gaining The Competitive Advantage: Successes and Challenges of Diverse Supplier Certification

Given the challenges diverse suppliers have in growing their businesses and in competing in the global economy, it is often necessary for them to partner with major certifying bodies to maximize potential opportunities. Major corporations with supplier diversity programs are members of both state and national advocacy organizations that assist with contracting diverse suppliers. These organizations act as the gatekeepers, so to speak, between diverse suppliers and successful business opportunities and procurement. This panel will examine the relationships between all parties involved in the certification process and potential challenges and successes involved to date and going forward.

Moderator: Stephanie Green, Supplier Diversity Manager, California Public Utilities Commission

Virginia Gomez, President & CEO, Southern California Minority Supplier Development Council

Summer Sepulveda, Director of Corporate Relations and Community Development, Women's Business Enterprise Council - West

Sydney Furbush,  Supplier Diversity Manager, San Diego Gas and Electric

Stephanie Hickman, President & CEO, Trice Construction Company

10:10 a.m. - 10:25 a.m.

Osceola Consulting's Tribal-Based Technology Delivery Center

This presentation will highlight the Tribal Technology Center, its overall business and job creation model and future plans for expansion in and outside of California.

Presenter: Kevin O. Narcomey, President and CEO, Osceola Consulting

10:25 a.m. - 10:40 a.m.

21st Century Innovations in Energy: An Equity Framework

The National Urban League will present an overview of a White Paper it released in October 2016 reviewing the current state of the energy industry and setting forth a plan by which the NUL will address various pressing economic and policy issues of concern to the African-American community. 

Presenter: Donald Cravins, Jr.Senior Vice President for Policy and Executive Director, Washington Bureau, National Urban League

10:40 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Commissioner Discussion:  UMA Supplier Diversity Toolkit

The Supplier Diversity Toolkit was formally launched at the NARUC Annual Meeting in San Francisco.  Now the UMA Committee members will discuss future plans for the Toolkit, including an action plan to retrieve relevant data from each state represented at NARUC.

Moderator: Hon. Nikki Hall, UMA Chairwoman and Commissioner, South Carolina

Comments: Laurie Dowling, Executive Director, National Utilities Diversity Council

11:00 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.

Commissioner Discussion: Subcommittee Name Change

Moderator: Hon. Nikki Hall, UMA Chairwoman, South Carolina

11:15 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Closing Remarks and Adjourn


Staff Subcommittee on Telecommunications


Networking Break (10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.)

Location: Flores Foyer


New Commissioner Forum (for New Commissioners) (10:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.)

Location: Studio


Washington Action (closed) (10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.)

Location: Diego Rivera


Staff Subcommittee on Energy Resources and the Environment

Location: Flores 1 & 2
10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

U.S. DOE: Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Furnaces

(Joint session with the Staff Subcommittee on Gas)

On September 23, 2016 the US Department of Energy issued a Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (SNOPR) on the Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Furnaces. 

According to the DOE, the SNOPR responds to comments received on the (9/14/15) NOPR and Notice of Data Availability (NODA) and is making a modified proposal regarding amended energy conservation standards for residential furnaces. The notice, further, requests comment on the SNOPR's proposed standards and associated analyses and results.  The DOE will accept comments through November 22, 2016.

This SNOPR has already raised some controversy, and a robust discussion on the merits of the DOE proposal.

The panel will address the availability of technologies, and discuss the level of benefits that can accrue the environment in general and consumers in particular.  

Karen R. Olesky, Chair, Staff Subcommittee on Energy Resources and the Environment

Andreas D. Thanos, Chair, Staff Subcommittee on Gas

Ron, Edelstein, Director, Regulatory and Government Relations, Gas Technology Institute

Elizabeth Noll, Legislative Director, Energy & Transportation,  Natural Resources Defense Council

AGA Member - Company Representative


Lunch Break (on own) (11:45 a.m. - 1:45 p.m.)


Committee on Consumer Affairs

Location: Flores 4
1:00 p.m. - 1:05 p.m.

Hot Topic: Industry Efforts to Stop Utility Consumer Bill Scams

Speaker: Becky Knox, Senior Director, Retail Energy Policy, EEI

1:05 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.

Rural Wireless and Consumers: New Proposals and Issues

The panel will examine recent proposals for a joint federal-state approach to ensuring that rural wireless consumers have access to broadband networks and services comparable to those in urban areas.  The panel will address broadband adoption in rural and, by extension, urban areas associated with rural broadband deployment.

Moderator: Hon. Brandon Presley, Mississippi

Hon. Catherine J.K. Sandoval, California

Grant Spellmeyer, Vice President, Federal Affairs and Public Policy, US Cellular

Mike Oldak, Vice President Strategic Initiatives & General Counsel, Utilities Technology Council

David LaFuria, Partner, Lukas Nace Gutierrez & Sachs, LLP

H. Russell Frisby, Jr., Partner, Stinson Leonard Street - representing EEI

2:15 p.m. - 2:20 p.m. Committee Business Sesssion
2:20 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

The Price is Right?: Comparing Consumer Tariffs and Their Potential Bill Impacts

Over the last several years new pricing and rate plans have emerged in the electric market.   Whether it is prepay, time of use, budget billing, etc… many consumers have new options to choose from.  But how do these new options compare to a traditional rate.  This panel will explore the many new pricing plans offered to consumers and how consumers are reacting to them, and explore the impact on consumers, as well as the need to educate consumers about these new options.

Moderator: Hon. Tim Echols, Georgia

Alison Peters Brown, Director of Pricing & Rates, Georgia Power

James Lewis, President & Co-CEO,  Just Energy

Kelly Speakes-Backman, Senior VP Policy & Research, Alliance to Save Energy


Staff Subcommittee on Electricity and the Staff Subcommittee on Electric Reliability (Joint Meeting)

Location: Flores 5

1:15 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Aliso Canyon Operational Update: Keeping the Lights on in Southern California: A Story of Cross-Industry Coordination and Communication

(Joint session with the Staff Subcommittee on Electric Reliability)

In October of 2015, a gas leak was detected in one of the 115 natural gas injection/withdrawal wells in the Aliso Canyon natural gas underground storage facility.  This facility is the second largest natural gas storage facility in the west and is critical to the electric reliability of southern California.   During typical summer operations, the 86 billion cubic feet of capacity provides fuel for 17 electric generating plants, with a combined capacity of 9800 MW.   And in the winter, the core typical demand for the gas supply flips, with residential and small commercial customers using 60 percent of the facility’s gas for heating.  

By the time the leaking well was permanently sealed in the early spring of 2016, about 80 percent of its capacity was lost and the entire facility was shut-in indefinitely.  Given the unprecedented number of electric generation plants counting on just-in-time gas delivery from Aliso Canyon, and the minimal amount of time to plan for alternate deliveries, how did California keep the lights on in the summer of 2016, and what provisions will assure winter operations?   Our speaker will describe the unprecedented level of coordination and communication across agencies and industries required to serve customers reliably.

Patricia Poli, Chair, NARUC Staff Subcommittee on Electric Reliability

Steve K. Ashbaker, Director Events Analysis & Situational Awareness, WECC

2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Grid Modernization: Consumer Impacts and Perspectives

Growing customer engagement has been a driving force behind transformation of the U.S. electric industry. We should expect more customer engagement in the future but some customers will remain passive. Now several years after the ARRA grants provided funding for the smart grid, many benefits of these investments are being realized by consumers. We will discuss research that examines how investments in grid modernization and smart grid technologies are empowering consumers to break the mold of passive consumption and become dynamic users. Both utilities and regulators will face new challenges in the emerging world of active and passive customers. Our speakers will share insights into the consumer perspective on the customer/utility relationship of the future. 

Moderator: Kimberly Duffley, Attorney, NC Utilities Commission and Vice-Chair of the Staff Subcommittee on Electricity

Nathan Shannon, Deputy Director, Smart Grid Consumer Collaborative

Ken Costello, Principal Researcher, Energy & Environment, National Regulatory Research Institute


Staff Subcommittee on Electricity and the Staff Subcommittee on Electric Reliability (Joint Meeting)

Location: Flores 6
1:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Agenda TBA


Telecommunications Modernization Act (closed)

Location: Diego Rivera
1:00 p.m. - 2:45 p.m.

Agenda TBA


Taskforce on Transportation

Location: Flores 1 & 2

3:00 p.m. - 3:05 p.m.


Transportation Task Force Welcome

Hon. Gladys Brown, Pennsylvania

Hon. Ann Rendahl, Washington

3:05 p.m. - 3:50 p.m.

Town Hall on Transportation Issues

In the enabling Charter for the NARUC Transportation Task Force, the Motor Carrier Section was charged with “compiling best state practices to modify common carrier laws in light of new business models and a trend toward competitive entry.”  To fulfill this mission, the Task Force sought input from NARUC members on the common issues that arise when regulating Transportation Network Companies (TNC).  Over the past several months, the Task Force has gathered information from NARUC members about how individual states regulate TNC service, including the issues and best practices that have emerged. Now that the Task Force has a comprehensive summary of state regulators’ perspectives on these issues, we are seeking industry and stakeholder input on the same topics, which include jurisdictional issues, driver safety, vehicle safety, insurance, and rates.

Curtis Scott, Senior Legal Director, Regulatory & Insurance, Uber

Michael Farren, Economist, Mercatus Center at George Mason University

Rachelle Celebrezze, Senior Policy Advisor, Lyft

John Clarke, James River Insurance Co.

3:50 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Question and Answers
4:00 p.m. - 4:10 p.m. Break
4:10 p.m. - 4:20 p.m.

Town Hall on Rail Issues

The NARUC Executive Committee established the Transportation Task Force to, in part, address the recent increases in the transportation of crude oil by railroad companies and the concerns of NARUC members and state railroad programs about railroad safety. The Working Group on Railroad Safety was formed to consider generating a document compiling information on state and federal authority over railroad safety, the transportation of crude oil, and the recent developments at the state and federal level in those areas. Over the past several months, the Working Group coordinated meetings, education sessions and requested focused industry feedback to inform the drafting of its Report on Railroad Safety. The Working Group has prepared a draft of issues, challenges, best practices and authorities related to the regulation of railroad safety, and is seeking input from interested stakeholders and member states on additional issues that should be addressed and ways to make the Report more useful as a tool for states.

Hon. Ann Rendahl, Washington

Railroad Working Group Staff TBA

4:20 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Comments from Interested Parties


Committee on International Relations

Location: Flores 4
3:15 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.

The Wide World of NARUC – Welcome and Introductions

Hon. David Danner, Washington

3:20 p.m. - 3:25 p.m.

Approval of Minutes/Resolutions

Hon. David Danner, Washington

3:25 p.m. - 3:35 p.m.

Remarks by Terry Barnich Award Recipients

The Terry Barnich Award is presented annually by the International Relations Committee to commissioners or staff in recognition of outstanding efforts to further international cooperation among utility regulators and to promote professional regulation. This year’s winners will deliver brief remarks.

Moderator: Hon. David Danner, Washington

Hon. Philip Jones, Washington

Raj Addepalli, New York

3:35 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Live from Marrakech: A Report on COP 22 – Marrakech

As the 22nd Conference of Parties to the UNFCCC reaches its midway point, one of the key members of the US delegation will give an update on the proceedings.

Moderator: Hon. David Danner, Washington

Panelist: Jonathan Pershing, Special Envoy for Climate Change, U.S. Department of State (invited)

4:00 p.m. - 4:20 p.m.

Update on Energy Reform in Mexico

The International Relations Committee has been following the implementation of energy reforms in Mexico. That country’s new chief energy regulator will provide a progress report.

Moderator: Hon. David Danner, Washington

Panelist: Hon. Guillermo García Alcocer, Chairman, Energy Regulatory Commission of Mexico

4:20 p.m. - 4:40 p.m.

The 2016 DOE-sponsored Commissioners' Mission to China: Major Lessons

For the third year, the US Department of Energy sponsored a Utility Commissioner Clean Energy Technology and Policy Mission to China. During this four-city, two-week mission, the five-commissioner delegation saw first hand the demonstration of cutting-edge energy technologies and participated in discussions on energy market reforms and carbon emissions trading. This session will allow them to share their major takeaways.

Moderator: Hon. Travis Kavulla, Montana and NARUC President

Hon. Sherina Maye Edwards, Illinois

Hon. Elizabeth Jacobs, Iowa

Hon. Sandy Jones, New Mexico

Hon. David Ziegner, Indiana

Mr. Robert Gee

4:40 p.m. - 4:45 p.m.

Preview of 27th World Gas Conference

A look ahead to the next triennial meeting of the International Gas Union, which will be held in Washington, D.C., in June 2018.   

Presenter: Hon. Diane Burman, New York

4:45 p.m. - 4:50 p.m.

EEI International Activities Mid-year Report

Presenter: Elizabeth Stipnieks, Director, Regulatory Relations, Edison Electric Institute
4:50 p.m.

Report on NARUC International Programs

Presenter: Erin Hammel, Director of International Programs, NARUC


Committee on Critical Infrastructure

Location: Flores 5

View Presentations 

3:15 p.m. - 3:50 p.m.


Updates from Partners
Matt Duncan, Program Manager, U.S. Department of Energy 

Sue Gander, Director, National Governors Association Center for Best Practices

David Batz, Senior Director, Cyber & Infrastructure Security, Edison Electric Institute

3:50 p.m. - 4:25 p.m.

Discussion of Catalog of Information on Cyber/Physical Measures Taken by States to Protect Critical Infrastructure

Discussion led by NJ Board of Public Utilities

4:25 p.m. - 4:45 p.m.

States and Industry to Discuss Costs Associated with Physical and Cybersecurity Upgrades

Moderator: Hon. Nick Wagner, Iowa

Hon. Joanne Doddy Fort, District of Columbia

Billy Ball, Chief Transmission Officer, Southern Company

4:45 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Resolutions


Networking Break (3:45 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.)

Location: Flores Foyer


Welcome Reception (5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.)

Location: Fiesta Ballroom

Monday, November 14


OPSI Breakfast/Board Meeting (invitees only) (7:00 a.m. - 8:45 a.m.)

Location: Fiesta 13,14


NARUC Board of Directors Meeting (7:30 a.m. - 8:45 a.m.)

Location: Studio


Registration Open (8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.)

Location: La Cita


Committee on Telecommunications

Location: Flores 7 & 8
9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

State Regulatory Process Considerations in National Lifeline Verification

The FCC Order, “Lifeline and Link Up Reform and Modernization” adopts reforms to make the Lifeline program a key driver of the solution to our Nation’s broadband affordability challenge. Panelists will examine National verification challenges. USAC, the agent for the FCC’s Universal Service Programs, will give a briefing on the steps taken on the development of a national verifier model for Lifeline ETC designations and other implementation activities.  NARUC Commissioners and Telecommunications Industry representatives will review State regulatory oversight of Telephone, Wireless and Broadband and strategies for providing Human Services Data Information and established efforts to provide Lifeline verification.

Moderator: Hon. Johann Clendenin, Virgin Islands

Hon. Gregg Sayre, New York

Hon. Betty Ann Kane, District of Columbia

Catherine Sandoval, California 

Ryan Palmer, Division Chief, FCC Telecommunications Access Policy Division

Michelle Garber, Vice President, Lifeline division of USAC

Kevin G. Rupy, Vice President, Law & Policy, USTelecom

Tony Shepherd,  Chief Executive Officer, Choice Communications

10:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. FCC Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau Chief Alison Kutler
11:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Committee on Telecommunications Business Meeting

Chairman: Hon. Chris Nelson, South Dakota

Co-Vice Chairs:
Hon. Catherine Sandoval, California

Hon. Paul Kjellander, Idaho



Committee on Water

Location: Flores 6
9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

The Challenges of Produced Water Storage and Disposal

Produced water, a byproduct of natural gas and oil exploration and production, presents challenges for storage and disposal.  The panel will discuss those challenges and the role that State regulators will have in the storage and disposal of produced water.

Moderator: TBA

Jill Cooper, Manager Reporting and Advocacy, Anadarko Petroleum Corporation

Panelist TBA

Panelist TBA

View Presentations 

10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

Irrigation and Large Volume Water Use:  Balancing Economic Interests, Conservation Efforts, and Rate Impact

Irrigation and other large volume water use sustain important economic interests including agriculture and recreational activities such as the golf course industry.  The panel will discuss what efforts are being undertaken to improve irrigation practices to sustain those interests while being engaging in conservation practices.  The panel will also discuss how State regulators and the water utilities they regulate can facilitate improved irrigation practices.

Moderator: Hon. Mary-Anna Holden, New Jersey

Brian Brady, General Manager, Fallbrook Public Utilities District

Don Distante, Director of Planning and Strategic Projects, SUEZ North America

Tracy Quinn, Policy Analyst, Water Program, Natural Resources Defense council

Jim Schmid, Director of Agronomy, The Lakes Country Club

William J. Steele, Area Manager, Southern California Area Office, United States Department of Interior, Bureau of Reclamation

View Presentations 

11:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Business Meeting

Items of Business of the Water Committee will be covered including discussion and action on Resolutions and approval of the minutes from the Summer Meetings. Additionally, updates from the various partners of the Water Committee will be given, including NAWC, NARUC, WRF, NRRI, and NARUC's Rate School.  Members of the Committee will also have time to brief the Committee on activities of interest in their State.


Committee on Gas

Location: Flores 5
9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Putting Pedal to the Metal—But Will Natural Gas Hit a Brick Wall?

Recent infrastructure projects have faced opposition from a wide and varied group of known and also previously unknown special interests.  Specifically, small but vocal groups have voiced opposition to projects ranging from LNG export terminals to new gas pipeline construction.  Regulators and legislators alike have discovered that this new environment requires careful navigation and an uptick in procedural elements before regulators and court challenges as well.   One such case study in New England saw the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court  denying the state PUC’s authorization for electric distribution companies to procure available gas capacity in an effort to  secure a low-cost, more reliable natural gas supply for electric generation.  The Court’s decision has wide ranging implications for Massachusetts and the region.  Given this dynamic, and the trend it seems to indicate, is it possible to develop, permit and construct major new natural gas infrastructure projects? What, if anything, can the pipeline industry, end-user utilities, state regulators, FERC, and other regional, state and federal stakeholders do to facilitate safe and reasonable development of critical industry in today's climate where even legally permitted projects are being successfully blocked from construction? Is additional pipeline capacity needed as a backstop for the development of renewable energy and to allow customers heating their homes with oil to shift to natural gas?

Hon. Stan Wise, Georgia

Hon. Diane X. Burman, New York

Hon. Mark Vannoy, Chairman Maine PUC 

Richard Kruse, V.P. Regulatory and FERC Compliance Officer, Spectra Energy 

Dena Wiggins, President, Natural Gas Supply Association 

Julien Dumoulin-Smith, Executive Director, Electric Utilities, UBS Investment Research, UBS Securities LLC

Kevin Reilly,  LIUNA International, Construction Department

Tony Clark, Former FERC Commissioner


10:30 a.m. - 10:55 a.m.

Business Meeting, Committee on Gas

Hon. Stan WIse, Georgia

Hon. DIane X. Burman, New York

Hon. Julie Fedorchak, N. Dakota


  • Approval of minutes of the July 2016 Meeting
  • Discussion on possible honorary resolutions
  • Other business as may come before the committee
10:55 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

The Future of Gas: Synergies Between Natural Gas and Renewable Generation

While the “utility of the future” gets a lot of attention on the electric side of the industry, the gas sector nationwide represents several possibilities in terms of distribution, retail services, and customer choice. Grid operators are seeing a significant increase in variable renewable energy resources, reaching 30 to 40% of demand at times in some regions (ERCOT for example). This variability can cause reliability issues and grid stability problems. Natural gas generation is a good complement to variable energy as NG generation is flexible and can quickly cycle up and down. More renewable, variable energy on the grid will lead to the need for more gas generation to maintain stability.This panel will discuss the unique perspective of the gas industry as it relates to the future of the utility and how synergies exist between natural gas and renewable generation and how to work to coordinate the two.

Hon. Julie Fedorchak, N. Dakota

Hon. Sherina Maye Edwards, Illinois

Larry Godlasky, Director, Government Affairs, UGI Energy Services, LLC

Dr. Ira H. Shavel, Principal, The Brattle Group

Paul DeCotis, West Monroe

Ralph LaRossa, President and COO, Public Service Electric & Gas

William Siderewicz, Clean Energy Future (invited)

Kenan Ogelman, VP Commercial Operations, Electric Reliability Council of Texas


Committee on Energy Resources and the Environment

Location: Flores 1 - 3

View Presentations 

9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Business Meeting

Hon. Nancy Lange, MN, Chair

Hon. Donna Nelson, TX, Co-Vice Chair

Hon. Jeannette Mills, MD, Co-Vice Chair

Consideration of Resolutions

Commissioner Roundtable

Clean Power Plan Discussion:
Commissioner Emeritus Doug Scott

10:30 a.m. - 11;45 a.m.

Distributed Resources for Disaster Response and Grid Resiliency

Federal agencies like the Department of Defense, and state and local governments are designing and building distributed energy systems, often in combination with energy storage, to support the continued operation of critical infrastructure during grid outages, natural disasters, and other emergencies. Unlike individual backup generators, these resources also provide value to consumers and to the grid during periods of normal (non-emergency) operation.  This panel will explore the costs and benefits of using distributed resources for resiliency and the operational characteristics of projects underway in various locations.

Moderator: Hon. Jeannette Mills, Maryland

Sarah Wright, Executive Director, Utah Clean Energy

Cal Broomfield, Climate and Energy Strategic Program Development, Department of Environment

Department of Defense (invited)


Committee on Electricity

Location: Flores 4
9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Location, Location, Location, and the Value of Distributed Energy Resources

Electric utilities are changing how they plan and operate their facilities as a result of policy incentives, technological improvements, and consumer choices that promote the increased use of distributed energy resources (DER). DER integration policies in California, New York and elsewhere will require utilities to more inclusively account for distributed resources and to identify where DER can be best integrated to provide the greatest benefit to the entire electric system. This panel will discuss the technical and policy implications of a landmark study with Consolidated Edison of New York and Southern California Edison that demonstrated methods for valuing the temporal and spatial impacts of DER on both radial and network distribution systems.

Hon. Edward Finley, North Carolina


Bruce Rogers, Technical Executive, Power Systems Analysis, EPRI

Susan Tierney, Senior Advisor, Analysis Group, Inc.

View Presentation — Time and Locational Value of DER: Methods & Applications

View Presentation — Value of D to DER

10:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

Repercussions from the Loss of the Aliso Canyon Gas Storage Facility

Hon. Catherine Sandoval, California

10:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Earthquake Impacts from Waste Water Injection from Oil and Gas Production

Hon. Dana Murphy, Oklahoma

View Presentation 

11:00 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.

DOE-Sponsored 2016 Mission to China: Major Lessons

Hon. Libby Jacobs, Iowa

Joseph Giove, Director of Business Operations of the Clean Coal Office, US DOE

11:15 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Business Meeting


Regulatory Update:
Jennifer Murphy, NARUC Assistant General Counsel


Staff Subcommittee on Law

Location: Diego Rivera
9:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Agenda TBA


Networking Break (10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.)

Location: Flores Foyer


Regulators Luncheon (Commissioners, Staff and Commissioners Emeritus) (11:45 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.)

Location: Waterfall Lawn


Opening General Session

Location: Fiesta Ballroom
1:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Welcome to the NARUC 128th Annual Meeting!

National Anthem by the La Quinta High School Band

Reflection on 2015-2016 Year as President: Hon. Travis Kavulla, Montana


Presentation of the Terry Barnich Award

The Terry Barnich Award recognizes the ongoing commitment of NARUC members to furthering regulatory best practices around the globe. 


Election of 2016 - 2017 Officers and Confirmation of Board Members

Nomination of NARUC President: Hon. Gladys Brown, Pennsylvania

Second Nomination of NARUC President: Hon. Doug Little, Arizona

Nomination of NARUC 1st Vice President: Hon. Phil Jones, Washington

Second Nomination of NARUC 1st Vice President: Hon. David Ziegner, Indiana

Nomination of NARUC 2nd Vice President: Hon. Lisa Edgar, Florida

Second Nomination of NARUC 2nd Vice President: Hon. Donna Nelson, Texas


Reflections on Public Service: Tony Clark

With more than 20 years of public service, former FERC Commissioner Tony Clark will provide an interesting, thoughtful retrospective of his roles in State and federal government, which include:

  • FERC Commissioner, 2012-2016
  • NARUC President, November 2010-November 2011
  • North Dakota Public Service Commission, 2000-2012
  • North Dakota House of Representatives, 1994-1997

View Presentations 


Networking Break (3:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.)


Section A (3:30 p.m. - 4:45 p.m.)

Location: Flores 6
3:30 p.m. - 4:45 p.m. A1

The Architecture of Modern Telecommunications & What It Says About Competition

What is regulated (or not) in the world of communications depends on whether there is sufficient competition for the service in question. Some services (long-distance) are obviously competitive; others (special access on which business data service relies) perhaps less so. This informative tutorial walks through the architecture of the modern telecom world and identifies the places that are wide open for competition and those which are bottlenecks.

Moderator: Hon. Upendra Chivukula, New Jersey

Hon. Sarah Hofmann, Vermont

Hon. Chris Nelson, South Dakota

Earl Comstock, Principal, Fish-Net Consulting, PLLC

Marvin Sirbu, Professor, Engineering & Public Policy, Carnegie Mellon University

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 7-8
3:30 p.m. - 4:45 p.m. A2

A Wholesale Market for Water: Do we need an ISO?

As water scarcity becomes an increasing issue, especially in the western states, new and creative ideas to address the cost of water resources. Wholesale rates for water can differ widely especially between urban drinking water and rural agricultural uses. In the electric industry RTO/ISOs create a market for pricing the commodity. Participants will discuss the applicability of locational marginal pricing to the water industry to ensure that increasing water scarcity can be managed at least cost, for the benefit of all customers. Attendees will learn what adaptations from electricity market design would be necessary to model the hydrological, environmental and legal constraints of water supply.

Moderator: Hon. Doug Little, Arizona

Hon. Catherine Sandoval, California

Frank A. Wolak, Director, Program on Energy and Sustainable Development, Professor, Department of Economics, Stanford University

Thomas Smegal, Vice President, CFO & Treasurer, California Water Service Group

Disque Deane, Jr., CIO and Co-Founder, Water Asset Management

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 1-2
3:30 p.m. - 4:45 p.m. A3

Market Darlings: Understanding the Appeal of Regulated Utilities in Today’s Capital Markets

Utilities are trending hard on Wall Street and are red hot for investors seeking to mobilize capital. Just how sweet of a deal are utilities getting? Debt has never been cheaper, but utilities resist the opportunity to debt-finance big investments, maintaining a capital structure that is still heavier on equity than their peers in Canada. Meanwhile, authorized returns on equity have fallen only slightly, and not as much as treasury rates have. Participants will learn what the underlying economics are and hear why financial players are responding with such interest.

Moderator: Hon. David Ziegner, Indiana


Hon. Ron Brise, Florida

Hon. Moin Yahya, Alberta Utilities Commission

James Coyne, Senior Vice President, Concentric Energy Advsors

Randy Woolridge, Professor of Finance, The Goldman, Sachs and Frank P. Smeal Endowed University Fellow in Business Administration, President, Nittany Lion Fund, LLC, The Pennsylvania State University

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 4
3:30 p.m. - 4:45 p.m. A4

Charging Ahead: Rate Design & Electric Vehicles

Electric vehicles are on the street and charging all around us, so what are the rules of the road? This session will review the role of the commission, utilities, and the stakeholders when it comes to electric vehicle rate design. State Commissioners will highlight proceedings which have discussed the appropriate role of the utility in investing in electric vehicle charging infrastructure and whether it will be rate based, or ‘below the line’ as an unregulated enterprise. Attendees will hear about the year-long investigation the State of Oregon initiated as well as pilot projects California has underway. Attendees will learn about 6 factors the State or Oregon used for consideration when determining whether to grant cost recovery.

Moderator: Hon. Jeannette Mills, Maryland

Hon. Carla Peterman, California

Hon. Norm Saari, Michigan

Bob Jenks, Oregon CUB

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 5
3:30 p.m. - 4:45 p.m. A5

Into Darkness: The Use of Interactive Exercises to Reduce Unknowns for Commissions

Many infrastructure challenges come from preparing for events that have never happened before. These “unknown unknowns” may be impossible to predict until after they’ve happened. A number of State Commissions have used tabletop exercises to help prepare for unpredictable events like earthquakes, cyber-attacks, terrorism, and even more mundane threats like rapid changes in technology and markets or renewable energy adoption. Commissions will learn how other states have learned from the interactive approach of using tabletop exercises. Commissions will hear about success stories and how they can replicate this preparedness. Stakeholders will learn how interactive exercises can contribute to building strong partnerships between public and private sectors, which is an essential precursor for effective communication in emergencies. A mini-interactive demonstration will be produced to illustrate some of the ways this approach can help your Commission navigate the unknown.

Moderator: Hon. Rick Mroz, New Jersey

Hon. Gladys Brown, Pennsylvania

Hon. Phil Jones, Washington

View Presentations 


MACRUC Regional Meeting (invitees only) (5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.)

Location: Fiesta 14


NECPUC Regional Meeting (invitees only) (5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.)

Location: Studio


MARC Regional Meeting (invitees only) (5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.)

Location: Fiesta 13


SEARUC Regional Meeting (invitees only) (5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.)

Location: Fiesta 10


Western Regional Meeting (invitees only) (5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.)

Location: Diego Rivera

Tuesday, November 15


Registration Open (8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.)

Location: La Cita


General Session

Location: Fiesta Ballroom
9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

The Election’s Finally Over. What Next for Energy & Telecom Policy?

In January, there will be a new administration and a new Congress. What will be their priorities? Perhaps more importantly, what should they be for the energy and telecom sectors?

This panel provides a read-out of what we know, what to look for, and offers ideas for reforms of the seminal laws and regulations that govern the regulated utility space

Moderator: Hon. Travis Kavulla, Montana

Bill Ritter, Jr., Former Colorado Governor, Founder and Director of the Center for the New Energy Economy (CNEE) at Colorado State University

Adam Bender, Associate Editor, Communications Daily

Devin Hartman, Electricity Policy Manager, R Street Institute

Ray Gifford, Partner at WBK and former Colorado Public Utilities Commission Chairman


Networking Break (10:15 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.)

Location: Flores Foyer


Section B (10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.)

Location: Flores 5
10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. B1

A Roadmap for a Successful Stakeholder Process

Before that thorny issue becomes a full-blown contested case before your Commission, consider engaging in a stakeholder process. But what does that mean? What does a successful one look like? Failure to engage a stakeholder process could lead to negative consequences such as protests and disruptions that detract from the issues. How do you prevent stakeholder engagement from just being a talk-a-thon leading up to a whole lot of nothing? Hear from stakeholders who will present their ideas about how to make the process work. Learn what tools are needed and how to map successful implementation. Also, learn how to evaluate the effectiveness of the process.

Moderator: Ellen Nowak, Wisconsin

Michael Champley, Commissioner Emeritus, Hawaii

Cindy Schonhaut, Consumer Advocate, Colorado

Elizabeth Upchurch, Senior Program Manager, Stakeholder Relations, Tennessee Valley Authority

John Sterling, SEPA

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 1-3
10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. B2

Methane Regulation: The Achilles Heel of Natural Gas?

Plan to attend this unscripted and honest discussion on the  PHMSA pending rulemakings on safety issues and on other planned regulations  that may help determine how durable a future natural gas has as the default fuel for American electric generation. Background: The EPA released sweeping rules targeting methane emissions from new or modified oil and gas wells, as well as equipment that transports and stores oil and natural gas. The regulations drew sharp criticism as costly and unnecessary. EPA says the new rules will cost operators at least $530 million – adding more financial burdens to a stressed industry laboring under comprehensive oversight. The EPA also signaled plans to apply similar rules to existing rigs/equipment and sought more data from industry to study how to further contain emissions. 

Moderator: Hon. Diane Burman, New York

Ralph LaRossa, President and COO, Public Service Electric & Gas 

N. Jonathan Peress, Air Policy Director, US Climate and Energy, Environmental Defense Fund

Thomas Hutchins, P.E., Vice President of Environmental, Health and Safety, Kinder Morgan

Andrew Woerner, Partner, ERM

PHMSA, Senior Staff Representative

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 4
10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. B3

Exploring Performance-Based Regulation

Some jurisdictions have moved away from the model of a return-on-rate-base/cost-of-service regulatory model, and have instead targeted utility revenues to establish measures of performance, such as customer satisfaction and reliability. This panel presents a few case studies on what has worked—and what hasn’t. In this session, participants will learn what experiences States and other countries have had in using performance-based regulation, as well as exploring what recommendations exist for implementing it at pilot or scale in your jurisdiction.

Moderator: Hon. Kenneth Anderson, Texas


Hon. Ken Quesnelle, Ontario Canada

Sonia Aggarwal, Director of Strategy, Energy Innovation

Lisa Frantzis, Senior Vice President, Advanced Energy Economy

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 6
10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. B4

Catch Me if You Can! Can New Technologies Stop Spoof Callers?

Consumers are increasingly inundated (and annoyed) by robo calls. While there are many legitimate robo calls, the ease with which phone numbers can be faked, or “spoofed," has led to a proliferation of scam calls. Rampant spoofing has undermined State and federal “do not call” lists and this makes identification of culprits and enforcement action difficult. Attendees will learn about new technologies that allow consumers to block unwanted calls. Attendees will understand the enforcement efforts at the State and federal level.

Moderator: Hon. Karen Charles Peterson, Massachusetts


Hon. Brandon Presley, Mississippi

Debra Berlyn, President, Consumer Policy Solutions

Michael Brady, SVP, State Regulatory Affairs, Comcast

Brent Struthers, Senior Policy Advisor, Neustar, Inc.

Linda Vandeloop, AVP External Affairs, AT&T

No Presentations Provided for this Session

Location: Flores 7-8
10:45 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. B5

Is Bigger Better? What You Need to Know about Mergers and Acquisitions

With a few high profile deals already done, another rejected, two recently announced and at least another ten utility companies looking ripe for takeovers, now is a good time to ask whether bigger is better. Experts will discuss why they are happening and how commissions should review them. Attendees will learn the reasons why - despite the time and controversies involved - utilities seek to merge with or acquire other utilities. Commissioners and staff will gain insight on different approaches to reviewing proposals and will learn how to spot the salient issues at stake.

Moderator: Hon. Willie Phillips, District of Columbia


Hon. Thomas Gorak,Hawaii

Dan Ford, Managing Director, Barclays

Elin Katz, Consumer Counsel, Connecticut Office of Consumer Counsel

Richard McMahon, Jr., Vice President, Energy Supply and Finance, Edison Electric Institute

View Presentations 


Networking Break (11:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.)

Location: Flores Foyer


Section C (12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.)

Location: Flores 4
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. C1

How to Consider Big Data in Prudence Reviews and Rate Cases 

Big data is becoming an invaluable tool to power, water, gas, and telecommunications companies. The power of the Cloud and of predictive analytics are opening up services and markets that were unimaginable five years ago. Participants will answer the tough questions: What are the most promising leads? What are the trade-offs, cautions, and wait-and-see areas? Do regulatory structures create barriers, and if so, what can we do about it? What can we do to get out of the way? All attendees will learn about accounting and ratemaking implications of utility expenditures on remotely hosted software. Commissioners and staff will learn what opportunities can be realized for utilities and rate payers from big data analytics, what regulatory structures create barriers to this and how to remove them, and how to judge which investments are prudent in terms of preserving optionality for future innovative issues? Stakeholders will learn how to navigate those regulatory barriers.

Moderator: Hon. Brien Sheahan, Illinois


Christopher Franklin, President & CEO, Aqua American Inc.

Dian Grueneich, Board of Advisors, FirstFuel and Senior Research Scholar, Stanford University, and Commissioner Emeritus, California PSC

Nikhil Krishnan, VP of Products, C3 loT Inc.

Kristin Munsch, Deputy Director, Illinois Citizens Utility Board

Kyle Seymour, President and CEO, S&C Electric

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 5
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. C2

Is There a Federal Infrastructure Package in Our Future?

For years Congress has been discussing new ways to fund investment to upgrade and repair aging infrastructure across the country. The recent events in Flint, Michigan have shed new light on the infrastructure challenges facing our nation. ASCE issues grades for the different infrastructures: Energy – D+; Drinking Water – D; Waste Water – D. Overall ASCE estimated that $3.6 trillion in investment is needed by 2020 to bring all our infrastructure up to a passing grade. The question is how to pay for it? Presidential and congressional candidates are increasingly talking about the need to invest in America’s infrastructure. With a new President and new Congress the initiative may get some traction in 2017. If so what form would this federal funding take? What priorities would States and the utility sector be looking for in such funding?

Moderator: Hon.Robert Powelson, Pennsylvania

Hon. Mary Anna Holden, New Jersey

Anthony F. Earley, Jr., Chairman, CEO and President, PG&E Corporation

Christopher Guith, Senior Vice President, U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Institute for 21st Century Energy

Walter Lynch, Chief Operating Officer, American Water

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 6
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. C3

RTO/ISO Governance: When Should States lead, Follow or Get Out of the Way?

States are all over the map in terms of their involvement in the decision-making process of ISOs and RTOs. Should they be in the driver’s seat on certain questions, like transmission cost allocation and resource adequacy, or should they tend to their knitting back home? State representatives will share their experience on the regional state committees that do everything from making decisions to providing advice to the multi-state organized markets. Commissioners and staff will learn about different approaches to the RTO/ISO stakeholder processes, the most effective ways to participate; how regional RTO/ISO committees differ from and interact with regional NARUC organizations; and what actions within and outside the stakeholder process can have the most impact. Stakeholders will hear about Commission priorities and learn about best methods to engage with Commissions on RTO/ISO issues.

Moderator: Hon. Sarah Hofmann, Vermont

Hon. Asim Haque, Ohio

Hon. Angela Weber, Indiana

Paul Suskie, Southwest Power Pool

Stacey Crowley, California ISO

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 1-3
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. C4

Storage: A Power System Game Changer?   

A variety of storage technologies are capable of providing grid-supporting functions.  Participants will discuss how the latest research on power system storage, including large-scale and aggregated small scale stationary batteries, hold potential to support the power grid, and what the latest technology and cost trends are.  Commissioners and others will learn how it can be evaluated in the context of an IRP.  Lastly, attendees will learn what types of services storage provides that should be paid for in an RTO setting, including what the different rules are for different types of storage systems, and what initiatives are helping or hindering incorporation of electric storage assets into the wholesale markets.

Moderator: Hon. Matthew Schuerger, Minnesota


Hon. Liane Randolph, California

Kiran Kumaraswamy, Market Development Director - AES Energy Storage

Steve Willard, Technical Executive - Energy Storage and Distributed Generation, EPRI

View Presentations 

Location: Flores 8
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. C5

The Price of Privacy

This panel will look at privacy practices and policy issues in the telecom, water, and electric sectors. It will explore what each sector can learn from the experience of the other. It will examine current policy debates at the federal and state level. In addition, the panel will look at “pay for privacy” plans – are they being seen in other utility sectors, or just Telecom? Will the “Market” be effective in “regulating” utility privacy practices? What are the marketing and education needs of consumers to make an informed choice on allowing the use of their personal data by utilities?

Moderator: Hon. Crystal Rhoades. Nebraska


Claude Aiken, Legal Advisor, Wireline, FCC

Doug Brake, Telecom Policy Analyst, Information Technology and Innovation Foundation

Dallas Harris, Policy Fellow, Public Knowledge

Kevin Rupy, US Telecom

No Presentations Provided for this Session


Installation Luncheon (1:00 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.)

Location: Fiesta Ballroom


NARUC Board of Directors Meeting (2:15 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.)

Location: Studio


National Regulatory Research Institute (NRRI) Colloquium

Location: Flores 6
2:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Opening Remarks & Introductions

Moderator: Rajnish Barua, Ph.D., NRRI Executive Director

2:35 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Broadband Access and Adoption – Where are we?

The FCC, providers, public interest groups, and others have encouraged broadband deployment and access through programs such as the Connect America Fund, the Broadband Lifeline Program, and carrier-sponsored programs such as Comcast's Internet Essentials.  The states have also implemented programs to encourage broadband availability and adoption,.  This presentation will these programs and others (including Facebook's proposed free internet program) in order to assess the status of broadband adoption across the country.

Presenter: Sherry Lichtenberg, Ph.D., NRRI Principal Researcher-Telecommunications

3:00 p.m. - 3:25 p.m.

Reimagining Interconnection Rules for an Eventual Plug-and-Play DG Future

The recent rapid growth in applications for distributed energy resources is partly the result of major technological improvements and cost reductions.  Some of those improvements are enabling changes in utility interconnection procedures for distributed generation and storage, especially for systems that use new smart inverters.  Interconnection standards developed by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and testing standards from Underwriters Laboratory (UL) are both undergoing major revisions, in keeping with the new technical capabilities for safe integration with the electric grid.  Forthcoming work by NRRI Principal Researcher Tom Stanton and Research Associate Kathryn Kline will explore the kinds of technical revisions that are in the works and identify possible changes in pre-existing interconnection rules, standards, and practices that state commissions might consider, to reduce interconnection challenges for both utilities and system designers, installers, and their customers.  This colloquium presentation will outline plans for that research and invite any additional questions or topics to be included in this project.

Tom Stanton, NRRI Principal Researcher-Energy & Environment

Kathryn Kline, NRRI Research Associate

3:30 p.m. - 3:55 p.m.

When Are Multiyear Rate Plans in the Public Interest?

This presentation is based on a research report released Ocotober 2016 and lays out a general approach for regulators in evaluating Multiyear Rate Plans (MRPs) as a ratemaking mechanism with the potential to advance the public interest.  It first discusses the expected benefits and outcomes of MRPs over traditional ratemaking practices.  The paper then takes a more critical approach by accounting for the downsides of MRPs.  The fact that relatively few utilities are currently operating under a MRP suggests that like most other mechanisms it has its costs as well as benefits.  An overall evaluation therefore requires a cost-benefit review. Utility customers can potentially benefit from MRPs in four major ways:  (1) lower prices, (2) more moderate price changes over time, (3) utility supply of more services, (4) higher reliability and improved customer service, and (5) more immediate price benefits from improved utility performance.  For regulators, the question is:  What would it take to produce these benefits?  This research attempts to answer this question, although admittedly not definitely and completely.

Presenter: Ken Costello, NRRI Principal Researcher-Energy & Environment 

3:55 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Closing Remarks

Rajnish Barua, Ph.D., NRRI Executive Director

Wednesday, November 16


Registration Open (8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.)

Location: La Cita


Section D (8:30 a.m. - 9:45 a.m.)

Location: Flores 1-3
8:30 a.m. - 9:45 a.m. D1

Opening the Door on Open Records Requests

With an increased trend for transparency and information sharing from state, local, and federal governments come an ever-increasing number of Freedom of Information Act requests. Although the Act itself pertains to federal government, there are related guidelines or statutes in place for each state. This session is designed to help states better understand and manage these requests and decrease the chilling effect associated with communicating internally and externally. Attendees will learn more about the rules of FOIA and open records requests, share and hear best practices for effective responses, understand the exemptions and, understand how State regulations on releasing public records differ from federal law.

Moderator: Hon. Lamar Davis, Arkansas

Kelly Speakes-Backman, Alliance to Save Energy, Commissioner Emeritus Maryland PSC

Rich Heidorn Jr., Editor-in-Chief & Co-Publisher, RTO Insider LLC

Jennifer Murphy, Assistant General Counsel, NARUC

View Presentations 

What is FOIA? (video)

Location: Flores 4
8:30 a.m. - 9:45 a.m. D2

A Square-Off on Nuclear Policy

The Headlines tell the story:

These Two Huge States Are Both Going Green, But Only One Is Trying to Save Nuclear Energy; Nuclear's Decline Will Raise Clean Power Plan Compliance Costs; Climate Scientists Urge California to Reconsider Diablo Canyon Closure Plans; Current Plant Closures Expected to Increase U.S. Carbon Emissions by 46 Million Metric Tons.

The debate on this issue will unfold live at NARUC! New York and California have taken different policy paths—each with merit. Ralph Cavanagh of NRDC and others will argue which State took the better alternative and why. Commissions and stakeholders will hear varying views on the most efficient way to migrate to a reduced carbon generation portfolio, including how to handle nuclear generation going forward. This problem is front and center before a large number of State Commissions and of interest to all stakeholders in the energy sector.

Moderator: Hon. Travis Kavulla, NARUC President, Montana

Ralph Cavanagh, Co-Director Energy Policy, NRDC

Michael Shellenberger, President, Environmental Progress, Co-founder and Senior Fellow at The Breakthrough Institute

View Presentations 


Networking Break (9:45 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.)

Location: Flores Foyer


General Session and NARUC Business Meeting

Location: Fiesta Ballroom
10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

The Rate is Right?

and NARUC Annual Business Meeting

The General Session will begin with the NARUC Annual Business Meeting. Commissioners are requested to take seats in the front of the meeting room. 

This session will review how the distributed energy resources compensation manual can be most useful to both new and seasoned commissioners and their staff. Attendees will be able to interact with the authors of the manual as they go through a guided case study showing the use and application of the DER Compensation Manual.  Attendees learn the primary purposes of the manual and what implementation should look like. At the conclusion, attendees will know: how a State can identify the impacts of DER on its system, what types of questions a regulator should be asking, and what type of information a regulator should be collecting. The authors will also discuss when revisiting your DER policy is appropriate and what policy techniques are most useful at that time.

FacilitatorChristopher Villareal, Minnesota


Jamie Barber, Georgia 

Ann-Marie Cuneo, Nevada 

Jeff Orcutt, Illinois