WSR 10-16-143

PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY

UTILITIES AND TRANSPORTATION

COMMISSION

[ Docket U-100523 -- Filed August 4, 2010, 9:12 a.m. ]

Subject of Possible Rule Making: The subject of this inquiry is to consider whether the utilities and transportation commission (UTC) should develop a new rule and/or modify existing rules in chapter 480-90 WAC, Gas companies and chapter 480-100 WAC, Electric companies, to address the use of electronic bills, notices of tariff revisions, bill inserts, documents in adjudicative proceedings, and reports required by settlement stipulations. This inquiry supplements the original CR-101 filed at WSR 10-08-094 to also consider whether to modify existing rules in chapter 480-90 WAC, Gas companies and chapter 480-100 WAC, Electric companies, to allow utilities to obtain and retain a customer's authorization to share personal information electronically with the utility's affiliates, subsidiaries or any other third party for the purpose of marketing services or product offerings to a customer who does not already subscribe to that service or product. The rule making has been assigned Docket U-100523.

Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 80.01.040 and 80.04.160.

Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: The UTC is responsible for protecting consumers by ensuring that investor-owned utility services are fairly priced, available, and reliable and by improving the flow of information to allow for more customer choices. E-mailing of bills and electronic customer authorization to share personal information is not provided for in the Washington Administrative Code rules (chapters 480-90 and 480-100 WAC). In lieu of required use of paper copies, companies want to have an option to provide customers or other interested persons electronic bills, notices of tariff revisions, bill inserts, adjudicative proceeding documents, reports required by settlement stipulations, and the option to provide electronic authorization to share a customer's personal information. This may, among other things, save utility companies mailing and printing costs.

Process for Developing New Rule: Agency study; and the commission will ask for initial written comments and conduct such other process as necessary to gather the information necessary to determine whether rules should be proposed or modified.

Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication. Interested persons may file comments on this amended filing with the Executive Director, Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission, P.O. Box 47250, 1300 South Evergreen Park Drive S.W., Olympia, WA 98504-7250, phone (360) 664-1174, fax (360) 586-1150, web portal at www.utc.wa.gov/e-filing., or through e-mail at <records@utc.wa.gov, by 5:00 p.m., September 10, 2010.

WRITTEN COMMENTS: Written comments may be submitted to the commission at the address given above and should be filed with the commission no later than September 10, 2010.

Electronic copies. The commission requests that comments be provided in electronic format to enhance public access, for ease of providing comments, to reduce the need for paper copies, and to facilitate quotations from the comments. Comments may be submitted via the commission's web portal at www.utc.wa.gov/e-filing or by electronic mail to the commission's records center at records@utc.wa.gov. Please include:


The docket number of this proceeding (U-100523).
The commenting party's name.
The title and date of the comment or comments.

An alternative method for submitting comments may be by mailing/delivering an electronic copy on a 3 1/2 inch, IBM-formatted, high-density disk, in .pdf Adobe Acrobat format or in Word 97 or later. Include all of the information requested above. The commission will post on the commission's web site all comments that are provided in electronic format. The web site is located at http://www.utc.wa.gov/100523. If you are unable to file your comments electronically or to submit them on a disk, the commission will always accept a paper document.

Opportunity for further comment is anticipated. Information about the schedule and other aspects of the rule making, including comments, will be posted on the commission's web site as it becomes available. If you wish to receive further information on this rule making you may (1) call the commission's records center at (360) 664-1234, (2) e-mail the commission at <records@utc.wa.gov>, or (3) mail written comments to the address above to the attention of David W. Danner, executive director and secretary. When contacting the commission, please refer to Docket U-100523 to ensure that you are placed on the appropriate service list. Questions may be addressed to Roger Kouchi (360) 664-1101 or e-mail at rkouchi@utc.wa.gov.

NOTICE


TO CONTINUE RECEIVING NOTICES AND INFORMATION ABOUT THIS RULE MAKING -- The commission wants to ensure its mailings are sent to persons who are interested in the topic and want to receive that information. ANY PERSON WHO COMMENTS will continue to receive notices and information. If you do not submit comments but wish to remain on the mailing list for this rule making, please advise the records center by any one of the following methods: (1) Send a note with your name, address (or a copy of your mailing label), and telephone and fax numbers referencing Docket U-100523, and the words "Please keep me on the mailing list"; or (2) e-mail your name, address, telephone and fax numbers, referencing Docket U-100523, and the words "Please keep me on the mailing list" to <records@utc.wa.gov>. Please note that all information in the mailings will be accessible through the commission's internet web site at <http://www.utc.wa.gov/100523>. THOSE INTERESTED PERSONS WHO DO NOT RESPOND MAY NOT RECEIVE FURTHER MAILINGS OR INFORMATION ON THE RULE MAKING.

August 4, 2010

David W. Danner

Executive Director

and Secretary

Washington State Code Reviser's Office