James Hunter

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

SJWC must restate the mandatory reduction to 20% from 30% on the ruling of the ALJ

Ruling filed by ALJ/TSEN/CPUC on 06/02/2015 Conf# 86653, download a PDF

Please take a moment and read the excerpts and by all means download and read the entire ruling.

The following is are excerpts from the ALJ ruling:
"Included in the Resolution is a requirement to "develop rate structures and other pricing mechanisms, including surcharges, fees, penalties, or other mechanisms, to maximize 25% water conservation." Pursuant to the Water Board regulations, San Jose Water Company must achieve mandatory reductions of 20 percent relative to its water consumption in 2013." 
"Given that we are about to go to hearing on San Jose Water’s general rate case on June 15, 2015, it would appear to be a perfect opportunity to recast all testimony about to be presented in order to reflect a 20% reduction from 2013 levels in water usage consistent with the requirements of both the Resolution and the Executive Order. This should be presented, if possible, in a manner consistent with the requirements in Section 2 "Mandatory Actions by Water Utilities" subsection e on page 4 of Resolution W – 5041. To the extent that any of the expense forecasts have a direct linkage to the reduction in water usage, for example purchased water, these expense forecasts should be adjusted accordingly."
The following excerpt is more complicated as the Drought Surcharges will have to be reviewed and SJWC may have to re-submit their tariff establishing and activating Schedule 14.1. Blogger: It appears that the Schedule 14.1 submitted by California Water Systems may be an improvement over the submission by SJWC and based on the comments fairer to SJWC customers.
 "This requirement is limited to only the first portion of the mandate: "to develop rate structures and other pricing mechanisms" and we will not address the more complicated aspects of "surcharges, fees, penalties, or other mechanisms." These latter requirements are being addressed by the requirement in the related Resolution W-4976 that water utilities file Tier 2 advice letters to add or activate Schedule 14.1, Water Shortage Contingency Plan, in their tariffs."
Blogger: I submitted a request to SJWC to be added to the distribution list for the Advise Letters that have a 20 day period for filing added information or a complaint, from the date of receipt by CPUC, this significantly restricts the ratepayers ability to effectively participate in the process. Its not obvious will this start the 20 day clock running again, allowing ratepayer/customer input, on the changed document? There is still the issue of the Public Hearing was it valid and acceptable, even though it was lacking an official record or transcript?

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