HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

813

TWENTY-SEVENTH LEGISLATURE, 2013

H.D. 1

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING TO ELECTRICITY PRODUCERS.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. Electricity in Hawaii is increasingly supplied by non-utility power generators that use a variety of both fossil fuel and renewable energy resources. Electric utilities acquire third-party supplied energy via power purchase agreements that establish a final price for energy supplied throughout the entire contract term, which typically lasts for twenty years. Negotiated prices in purchased power agreements are reviewed by the public utilities commission and the division of consumer advocacy of the department of commerce and consumer affairs, though the independent power producers' underlying cost data and associated assumptions are not typically disclosed to the commission and the division of consumer advocacy.

Complete access to underlying renewable energy project cost information, including cost support information and associated materials, would allow the commission and the division of consumer advocacy to better determine the reasonableness of proposed prices in the context of the local energy market, independently track trends in renewable energy project development, and more readily compare independent power producers' projects. More specific, detailed contract information can fundamentally shift the way renewable energy project costs are currently set so that they move more closely in line with the actual costs of energy production and are free of the influence of volatile fuel oil prices. In addition, more open and clear contract pricing information could potentially improve the financing environment for non-utility energy developers, thus benefiting the entire State through lower renewable energy project financing costs.

The purpose of this Act is to authorize the public utilities commission and the division of consumer advocacy to examine all records, projections, business documents, and other necessary information relating to the review by the commission and the division of consumer advocacy of power purchase agreements for the sale of electricity to a public utility.

SECTION 2. Chapter 269, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"269-   Power purchase agreements; records; confidential information. The public utilities commission and the division of consumer advocacy of the department of commerce and consumer affairs shall have the authority to examine all documents, ledgers, records, projections, contracts, or any other information and data pertaining to the development, financing, taxation, construction, or operations and maintenance of a project in any power purchase agreement that has been submitted to the commission and division of consumer advocacy for review or approval, as the commission and division of consumer advocacy deem necessary, including the information and data of any third-party electricity producer seeking to sell electricity to a public utility as defined within section 269-1; provided that this section shall be effective to the extent it is not inconsistent with applicable federal law. The commission and the division of consumer advocacy shall maintain the confidentiality of all information submitted under confidential seal and provided in accordance with this section."

SECTION 3. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 4. This Act, upon its approval, shall take effect on July 1, 2050.


 


 

Report Title:

Power Purchase Agreements; Third-party Electricity Producers; Independent Power Producers; Public Utilities Commission; Records; Business Records

 

Description:

Authorizes the public utilities commission and the division of consumer advocacy to examine all documents and other information and data deemed necessary for the review of power purchase agreements before the commission and division of consumer advocacy, including financial records, projections, cost reports, and other material of third-party electricity producers seeking to sell power to a public utility under a power purchase agreement. Effective July 1, 2050. (HB813 HD1)

 

 

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