Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
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The information collected under the requirements of FERC-600 Rules of Practice and Procedure: Complaint Procedures (OMB No. 1902-0180) is used by the Commission to implement the statutory provisions of the Federal Power Act (FPA), 16 U.S.C. 791a-825r; the Natural Gas Act (NGA), 15 U.S.C. 717-717w; the Natural Gas Policy Act (NGPA), 15 U.S.C. 3301-3432; the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 (PURPA), 16 U.S.C. 2601-2645; the Interstate Commerce Act, 49 U.S.C. App. § 1
With respect to the natural gas industry, section 14(a) of the NGA provides: The Commission may permit any person to file with it a statement in writing, under oath or otherwise, as it shall determine, as to any or all facts and circumstances concerning a matter which may be the subject of an investigation.
Section 215(d)(5) of the FPA provides: The Commission, upon its own motion or upon complaint, may order the Electric Reliability Organization to submit to the Commission a proposed reliability standard or a modification to a reliability standard that addresses a specific matter if the Commission considers such a new or modified reliability standard appropriate to carry out this section. * * *
For qualifying facilities, section 210(h)(2)(B) of PURPA provides: Any electric utility, qualifying co-generator, or qualifying small power producer may petition the Commission to enforce the requirements of subsection (f) as
Likewise for oil pipelines, Part 1 of the Interstate Commerce Act (ICA), sections 1, 6 and 15 (re-codified by Pub. L. 95-473 and found as an appendix to Title 49 U.S.C.) the Commission is authorized to investigate the rates charged by oil pipeline companies subject to its jurisdiction. If a proposed oil rate has been filed and allowed by the Commission to go into effect without suspension and hearing, the Commission can investigate the effective rate on its own motion or by complaint filed with the Commission. Section 13 of the ICA provided that: Any person, firm, corporation, company or association, or any mercantile, agricultural, or manufacturing society or other organization, or any common carrier subject to the provisions of this chapter in contravention of the provisions thereof, may apply to the Commission by petition which shall briefly state the facts: Whereupon a statement of the complaint thus made shall be forwarded by the Commission to such common carrier, who shall be called upon to satisfy the complaint, or to answer the same in writing, within a reasonable time, to be specified by the Commission. * * *
In Order No. 602, 64 FR 17087 (April 8, 1999), the Commission revised its regulations governing complaints filed with the Commission under the above statutes. Order No. 602 was designed to encourage and support consensual resolution of complaints, and to organize the complaint procedures so that all complaints are handled in a timely and fair manner. In order to achieve the latter, the Commission revised Rule 206 of its Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.206) to require that a complaint satisfy certain informational requirements, that answers be filed in a shorter, 20-day time frame, and that parties may employ various types of alternative dispute resolution procedures to resolve complaints.
In Order No. 647, 69 FR 32436 (June 10, 2004), the Commission revised its regulations to simplify the formats it requires for various types of notices. These revisions provide for a more uniform formatting and make it easier for the Commission to update the form of notice formatting without the necessity of initiating a rulemaking for every change. A new subsection 18 CFR 385.203(d) replaced the former format requirements. Among the provisions that were affected by these revisions was 18 CFR 385.206(b)(10).
On September 9, 2005, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approved the reporting requirements contained in FERC-600 for a term of three years, the maximum period permissible under the Paperwork Reduction Act
Investigations may range from whether there is undue discrimination in rates or service to questions regarding market power of regulated entities to environmental concerns. In order to make a better determination, it is important to know the specifics of any oil, gas, electric, and hydropower complaint “upfront” in a timely manner and in sufficient detail to allow the Commission to act swiftly. In addition, such complaint data will help the Commission and interested parties to monitor the market for exercises of market power or undue discrimination. The information is voluntarily submitted with prescribed information. The Commission implements these filing requirements in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) under 18 CFR part 385, 385.206, 385.203 and 385.213.
Estimated cost burden to respondents is $68,904. (1,134 hours/2,080 hours per year times $126,384 per year average per employee = $68,904). The cost per respondent is $851. There is a significant decrease in the number of respondents and number of filings since the last renewal request. However, the cost per respondent has increased to reflect adjustments due to inflationary costs.
The reporting burden includes the total time, effort, or financial resources expended to generate, maintain, retain, disclose, or provide the information including: (1) Reviewing instructions; (2) developing, acquiring, installing, and utilizing technology and systems for the purposes of collecting, validating, verifying, processing, maintaining, disclosing and providing information; (3) adjusting the existing ways to comply with any previously applicable instructions and requirements; (4) training personnel to respond to a collection ofinformation; (5) searching data sources; (6) completing and reviewing the collection of information; and (7) transmitting, or otherwise disclosing the information.
The estimate of cost for respondents is based upon salaries for professional and clerical support, as well as direct and indirect overhead costs. Direct costs include all costs directly attributable to providing this information, such as administrative costs and the cost for information technology. Indirect or overhead costs are costs incurred by an organization in support of its mission. These costs apply to activities which benefit the whole organization rather than any one particular function or activity.