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Senate | May 21, 2014 | Chamber | Appropriations Utilities

Full MP3 Audio File

Okay everyone it is high noon, let's, Dana Simpson, let's get, Kelly Kekura[?], let's get, sit down back there guys. Thank ya'll for being here today. We have one bill on the docket today but I wanna recognize our house pages and our sergeant at arms today. As I call your name, house pages, you guys will stand up and wave, act like you're having fun would be good. Shane Lichter, is that right Shane? Thank you, you didn't stand up, you didn't wave. Good to see you buddy, thank you. Jillian Oberman, is that right Jillian? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes, sir. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you ma'am, appreciate that. Wake County, both of them from Wake County. Anthony, and how do you say your last name Anthony? Gotcha, thank you for being here, from Davie County. Julia is that, oh Julia's talking, is that one of your constituents there, from Davie County? Behind you there? Anthony, stand up and wave. Good. Douglas Haywood from Columbus County. Thank you buddy, appreciate you guys being here. Sergeant at arms today, as you guys know, I'm always grateful for the job they do, Bill Bass, Bill? Thank you buddy, appreciate it. Bill Morris, sorry about that. Thank you guys for being here today. We have one bill on the agenda today, the Just Utility Regulatory Fee. Process is gonna be I'm gonna let Ms. Finnell[??] just go through the bill, we're gonna let some folks from AT&T answer any questions 'cause they're the experts on it. I can and will answer some questions on this side, too. So with that I will let Ms. Finnell start with the explanation [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you- [SPEAKER CHANGES] This is not a PCS, is it Ms. Finnell? Just a straight bill? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes, sir. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay, thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, sir. This is HB 1052 and this was a recommendation of the LRC committee on utility regulatory fees and what this bill does is it actually breaks out from the utility regulatory fee certain revenues from telephone companies that are open to competition. If a telephone company is open to competition it can elect an alternative form of regulation, which are regularly called subsection M and subsection H. For those revenues from those lightly less regulated services, they will be subject to a lower regulatory fee. The non-retail revenues from telephone companies and all other public utility revenues, your electric companies, your gas companies, your water companies, they're still gonna be subject to the same utility reg. fee. So we're basically breaking out part of the reg. fee and allowing it to have a lower rate. So if you look at sections 2 of the bill, 2a and 2b, it sets the jurisdictional rate for fiscal years '15 and fiscal year '16. For subsection H it's set at .6 for '15 and .4 for 2016. Section 3a and b also does the same for subsection M revenues. It sets the rate at .5 for 2015 and .2 for 2016. Section 4 does not set the other utility reg. fee. This is usually set in the budget so this would be the reg. fee on all other revenues and it does say that the intent of the General Assembly is to set that rate at a rate that is enough to allow the utilities commission and the public staff to continue to operate. The utility reg fee is imposed on utilities to defray the cost of both the Utilities Commission and the Public Staff and it's only used for those purposes and I'd be happy to answer any questions. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Ms. Finnell. This is basically a bill that, if you use a service you pay for the service, if you don't use the service you don't pay for the service. That's what it comes down to. Any questions from the committee? You guys are easy today. Rodney, you have any questions? Just kidding. Wait for a motion. Recognize Representative Moore for a motion. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Move that we give a favorable report to HB 1052. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Favorable to finance. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Favor with referral to finance. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, thank you representative Moore. All in favor? All opposed? Thank you guys for being here today, it's the only business on the calendar, we are adjourned.