WSR 20-05-009
[Filed February 5, 2020, 2:28 p.m.]
Subject of Possible Rule Making: In 2006, the Washington utilities and transportation commission (commission) adopted chapter 480-107 WAC, which requires, in part, investor-owned electric utilities to solicit bids, rank project proposals, and identify any bidders that meet the minimum selection criteria. In 2016, the commission opened a new rule making in Docket U-161024 to consider rule changes to implement changes to the integrated resource plan (IRP) statute in chapter 19.280 RCW, and to clarify how recent advances in the energy industry should be treated in the IRP, to improve the IRP review process for more efficiency, and to make the resource acquisition rule in chapter 480-107 WAC more effective to reduce the frequency of utility waiver requests for this rule.
However, while the rule making was ongoing, the legislature enacted legislation in 2019, including the Clean Energy Transformation Act codified in chapter 19.405 RCW, that affected the acquisition rule as well as other rules under consideration in Docket UE-161024. Consequently, the commission has terminated the rule making in Docket UE-161024. The commission opens this new rule making in Docket UE-190837 to review rules in chapter 480-107 WAC to incorporate statutory changes made since 2006, to consider changes contemplated in the original 2016 rule making and additional requirements, policy improvements, and changes in the energy industry that may affect the rules on purchases of electricity, chapter 480-107 WAC.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 80.01.040, 80.04.160, chapter 19.405 RCW.
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: The commission has not substantially revised its rules on purchases of electricity since 2006. The commission may need to modify its rules to account for forecasted regional resource adequacy deficiencies, the growth of new price competitive resources, a large rise in the number and sophistication of developers, and an increase in the diversity of the type of generation projects and contract structures available in the market. The enactment of new chapter 19.405 RCW also requires the commission to consider whether changes to the purchase of electricity rules are necessary or desirable. Changes to the rules may improve the acquisition processes, create more stable rates and appropriate levels of reliability by improving resource adequacy, increasing a utility's pursuit of additional resource opportunities not bid into its request for proposals, and providing greater clarity of the requirements of chapter 19.405 RCW.
Process for Developing New Rule: The commission uses a collaborative rule-making process that includes stakeholder workshops, formal comments, and draft rules.
Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting Executive Director and Secretary, P.O. Box 47250, Olympia, WA 98504-7250, phone 360-664-1234, TTY 1-800-833-6384 or 711, email, website
Additional comments: When commenting, please refer to Docket UE-190837.
February 5, 2020
Mark L. Johnson
Executive Director
and Secretary