Thursday, April 30, 2020

PUC To Seek Comment On Proposed Regulation To Address Barriers To Enhance Water, Wastewater Services

On April 30, the Public Utility Commission voted 4-0 to issue an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANOPR) – exploring a series of interrelated issues impacting water and wastewater utilities across the state and seeking public comment on those matters.
As highlighted by a statement from Commissioner Ralph V. Yanora, water quality for small, troubled or non-viable water and wastewater systems is a key item in the proposed rulemaking. 
The proposed rulemaking seeks input about whether the extensive and potentially redundant documentation currently required when large, well-established water or wastewater utilities seek to acquire smaller, and sometimes troubled, systems is an impediment to some transactions – adding unnecessary expense, complication and time delays that work against the Commission’s policy of supporting system consolidation and regionalization.
The proposed rulemaking also includes an exploration of what methods within the Commission’s jurisdiction might be used to reduce or eliminate the presence of contaminants such as lead, PFOA/PFOS and Legionella from the drinking water supplies of acquired systems – and whether it would be reasonable for the Commission to condition approval of acquisition applications on the implementation of the DEP-approved cross-connection control programs and/or a Commission-approved cross-connection control plan that most affected utilities address through their Commission-approved tariffs.
As part of the ANOPR process, the Commission is encouraging regulated utilities, the public, and any other interested parties to file comments, which should include specific section references to the Commission regulations, along with the rationale for the proposed change to those regulations.
Comments referencing Docket No. L-2020-3017232 should be submitted within 60 days of publication of the ANOPR in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
Comments may be filed electronically through the Commission’s e-File System.  Filing instructions may be found on the Commission’s website.
Written comments referencing Docket No. L-2020-3017232 may also be sent to the following address: Secretary, Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, Commonwealth Keystone Building, 400 North Street, 2nd Floor, Harrisburg PA 17120.
This action is a follow-up to the unanimous approval of a Feb. 6, 2020 motion offered by Commissioner Yanora, which began the rulemaking process.
The Commission will carefully review and consider public and stakeholder comments and will then determine how best to move forward.
[Posted: April 30, 2020]  PA Environment Digest

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