MINUTES - ENERGY COMMITTEE
November 19, 2002
Staff Contact: Ken Pokalsky
Chair, National Fuel Gas Distribution Corp.
Johnny Evers The Business Council of New York State
Jim Adams, Cornell University
Brent Archer, Columbia Gas Transmission Corp.
John A. Belgiovine, Select Energy New York
Bob Bergin, Rochester Gas & Electric Corp.
Frank Bifera, Hiscock & Barclay
Carolyn Brown, Independent Power Producers of New York
Charles Brown, Gehring Tricot Corporate
Michael Caufield, Alcoa
Cindy Chadwick, New York State Electric & Gas
Terri Crowley, Consolidated Edison
Pat Curran, The Energy Association of New York State
Martin Daley, Dynegy Northeast Generation
Jerry DeLuca, Patricia Lynch Associates
Dan De Vinney, PG & E National Energy Corporation
Mike Doyle, New York State Petroleum Council
Gavin Donohue, Independent Power Producers of New York State
Anita Flanagan, Iroquois Gas Transmission
Louis Friscoe, Mirant New York
John P. Glusko, C H Energy Group
Glenn Haake, IPPNY
John Hamor, New York Power Authority
Diana Hinchliff, Sehwartz Heslin Group
John Holsapple, Environmental Energy Alliance
Scott Irwin, NYPA
Jerry Jennings, Patricia Lynch Associates
Mitchell Khosrova, Devorsetz Stinziano Gilberti
Noelle Kinsch, LeBoeuf, Lamb, Greene & MacRae
Kevin Lanahan, Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation
Trudy Lehner, IGC-Super Power
Stephen Little, Cornell University
Robert Loughney, Couch White
Maureen McCandless, Bolton-St. Johns, Inc. (KeySpan)
Bernie McGarry, NYS Senate
Chris McGrath, New York Capitol Consultants
Sandra Meier, Environmental Energy Alliance of NY
Bob Moses, Bond, Schoeneck & King
Lynn Mueller, Decision Strategies Group
Carol E. Murphy, New York Independent System Operator
Jonathan Pierce, Sawchuk, Brown Associates
Frank Priviteram Word Management Corporation
John Reese, Reliant Energy
Michael Rynasko, The Energy Association of New York State
Kristen Schettini, PG & E National Energy Group
Howard Shapiro, The Energy Association of New York State
Jim Shaw, Alcoa, Inc.
Stuart Silbergleit, The Energy Association of New York
Angela Sparks-Beddoe, Energy East Corporation
Steven Sullivan, New York Independent System Operator
Ty Tafel, Golub Corporation
Matthew Tebo, Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman & Dicker
Anne Van Buren, The Energy Association of New York State
Jack Vandervort, The Vandervort Group
Dan Weekley, Dominion Resources
Scott Wigger, Featherstonhaugh
Jim Wright, NYS Senate
Algrid White, Couch White
Dan Whyte, PG&E
Welcome and Introductions
Mike Rose, National Fuel Gas, Committee Chairman
Guest Speaker, Hon. Maureen Helmer, Chairman
New York State Public Service Commission
Federal/National issues. Chairman Helmer discussed the development of electricity markets. She stated that much of the work being done at the federal level is based on the good models developed in NY. FERC originally wanted a NY/NE/PJM model but this has slowed. FERC has ruled that the NERTO (Northeast Regional Transmission Organization) is not broad enough with only NY-NE. A mergers chief purpose is savings and synergies. Needed are SMDs (Standard Market Designs), elimination of transaction fees, resolution of "seams" issues. Mitigation proposals should be a national concern not just territorial. Discussions in the New York markets. Touched on ICAP and UCAP as well as market mitigation.
State Issues. Chairman Helmer touted the green power provider choices offered by some NY utilities. The issue of provider of last resort (POLR) was mentioned and on-going efforts at the PSC are addressing this issue. Chairman Helmer discussed the need for a continuation of the Article X siting law. She emphasized the need for continuity.
Question/Answers. Chairman Helmer took questions from the committee. The issue of distributed generation, natural gas pipelines, energy security and coordinated energy policy were raised by members of the committee. The Commission is looking at DG opportunities and has issued some rulings. Pilot programs. Likewise they look at security issues. They have stated the need for more power and natural gas. She stated that administration and agency leaders meet often to discuss efforts to help the energy situation.
2003 Energy Committee Legislative Program.
The committee discussed the 2003 Legislative program. The committee discussed the need to update certain items as follows:
An emphasis to oppose legislation to delay or modify existing energy tax cuts (GRT, GIPT, etc). This has been and will continue to be a priority for The Business Council.
Support legislation that provides state agencies with the necessary flexibility to exempt certain sensitive information from public disclosure while maintaining the existing appeals processes.
Oppose redundant "whistleblower" reporting requirements
Oppose legislation that seeks to restrict the use of certain outdoor lighting installations thus resulting in less effective and less safe illumination of roadways and other public spaces.
Support the continued operation of all existing, economically viable, base load electric generating facilities, including nuclear plants, as a means of ensuring stable and competitive prices and supply diversity.
Encourage an on-going review of the states energy needs.
Resist proposals to unduly subsidize alternative supply strategies.
Efforts to change the Hours of Service (HOS) were successful in 2002 therefore the program was edited to reflect that change.
An emphasis on the need for a continuation of the Article X power plant siting law was stressed. At this juncture the committee discussed the need to discuss the laws expiration in depth and the Legislative program was adopted.
The committee reviewed the situation regarding the expiration of the power plant siting law (Article X). A chart outlining the number of cases pending before the Siting Board was handed out to the committee. The break down of the various bills addressing the law were discussed. Mr. Gavin Donohue, Executive Director of the Independent Power Producers (IPPNY), addressed the committee. Prior to the Energy Committee meeting, a press conference was held regarding an extension of the Article X law. The press conference was sponsored by IPPNY. The Business Council, AFL-CIO, The Energy Association, The NYC Building Congress, and NYC Partnership also participated in the press conference. Copies of the press release can be found at:
The committee was very interested in having a reauthorization of the siting law prior to its expiration. Sen. Wrights bill extending the Article X law was discussed. An extension of the current law, which was the subject of that mornings press conference, was deemed a positive sign to the industry.
The committee reviewed a few ideas regarding the extension legislation.
The extension provides the siting process certainty that will be lost if we let it expire. We have gone from Article 8 to a gap that was covered by SEQR to Article X. We are now faced with the possibility of another long, drawn out gap negotiating another siting law starting January 1, 2003.
The law allows the markets to look favorably on NY as a safe, certain place to invest its dwindling generator money. With limited funds and market down turn, we would essentially preclude future investment without a clear message.
The law provides for many things that all have agreed on - both the environmental community and business. The process is the result of long thought out discussion in years past and provides for some certainty and time frames for business. It provides funding and party status for public participation. While we would like some speed-up time tables and better hearing rules, we agree that some points in the law are good.
The law has been amended before (while on the books) and can be amended again after it is extended. It was amended to clarify EPA permit issues in 1999 and a speed-up provision was added in 2001 for certain environmental stipulations.
Lastly, the local override (due to zoning) would be back in and the whole debate over communities essentially vetoing developers is no longer addressed without Article X.
The committee was hopeful that the Senate and Assembly would act on legislation prior to the end of the 2002 session and the current law (December 31,2002).
and next meeting
The committee will meet again during the 2003 legislative session. The date will be in March 2003.