SCS/HB 462 - This act modifies provisions pertaining to the regulation of public utilities.
SECTION 386.370 - FUNDING FOR OFFICE OF PUBLIC COUNSEL
Under current law, the Public Service Commission (PSC) receives funding from a fee assessed to each regulated public utility based on the proportionate amount of time and expenses spent by the PSC on each utility. This act creates a similar fee assessment and collection mechanism for the Office of Public Counsel. The act lowers the total amount that may be collected for the PSC from the fee, from its current maximum of .25% of the total gross intrastate operating revenue to .22% of total gross intrastate operating revenue. The act limits the total amount of fee revenue that may be collected for the Office of Public Counsel to .02% of total gross intrastate operating revenue and places a cap on the assessment to telecommunications companies.
SECTION 393.135 - CONSTRUCTION WORK IN PROGRESS
After October 1, 2011, any electric company seeking an Early Site Permit from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission must submit reports to the PSC every 6 months during the entire permitting process. The reports must document the work completed and costs incurred up to that point toward the acquisition of the Early Site Permit as well as the projected amount of work and costs remaining.
Once the Early Site Permit is obtained, and provided the company complied with the reporting requirement, the electric company may recover up to $45 million of the expenditures, plus interest, for the permit from its ratepayers through rates and charges over a period not to exceed 20 years. The company may begin the cost recovery on the effective date of tariffs approved by the PSC at the company's first general rate proceeding following the acquisition of the permit. Other electric companies that also incur expenses toward the Early Site Permit may similarly recover their costs through rates and charges.
If an electric company has recovered costs from its ratepayers for an Early Site Permit but the company's interest in the Early Site Permit is subsequently sold or transferred, or the company receives reimbursement for the costs from another source, the PSC must decide how the electric company will credit its ratepayers for the moneys received in the sale, transfer or reimbursement.
The PSC must also decide how any profits from a sale or transfer of an Early Site Permit will be shared with ratepayers. Credits made to ratepayers must also include interest.
If the power plant for which the Early Site Permit was acquired is not constructed before the Early Site Permit expires, the PSC must hold a hearing to determine if the electric company acted imprudently by failing to construct the plant. If the PSC determines that the electric company acted imprudently, the PSC must order any company that recovered costs for the Early Site Permit to credit its ratepayers for the costs determined by the PSC to be imprudent. The companies must issue the credits, including interest, over a period of 5 to 10 years.
SECTION 386.850 - MISSOURI ENERGY TASK FORCE
This act repeals the statute that requires the Missouri Energy Task Force to reconvene at least once per year to review and report on progress made toward accomplishing the recommendations contained in the task force's final report.
This act contains provisions similar to SCS/SB 321 (2011), SCS/SB 48 (2011), SB 406 (2011), SB 207 (2011), and HB 462 (2011).