On April 26, 2018, the California Public Utilities Commission (“Commission”) held its agenda meeting in San Francisco, California. The telecommunications items addressed at the meeting are summarized below.
Resolution T-17600 Denying Kerman Telephone Company’s Advice Letter 409-B Requesting an Increase of $71,494 in CHCF-A Support for CY 2017 (Item 8, adopted on consent agenda)
The Commission denied Kerman’s requested increase to its CHCF-A support in response to the limited rehearing granted of Resolution T-17559 to determine whether Kerman’s requested adjustments would result in Kerman exceeding its authorized 2017 rate of return. Similar to the original Resolution T-17559, Resolution T-17600 finds that Kerman is overearning, a matter disputed by the Applicant.
A copy of the resolution adopted by the Commission is available at the following link: http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PublishedDocs/Published/G000/M213/K291/213291025.pdf.
Decision Adopting All-Party Settlement Agreement in the Application of Calaveras Telephone Company for New Intrastate Rates and Charges, Establish New Intrastate Revenue Requirement and Rate Design, and Modify Selected Rates (Item 18, adopted on consent agenda)
The decision adopted in Calaveras’ rate case is similar to the decision in Cal-Ore’s rate case. Calaveras and the Office of Ratepayer Advocates (“ORA”) had submitted separate comments to the proposed decision because of a disagreement over whether the CHCF-A support in the parties’ settlement agreement should reflect the updated High Cost Loop Support (“HCLS”) amount and applicable adjustments for revenue effects of “regulatory changes of industry-wide effect.” Although the parties had agreed that these adjustments should be handled through the CHCF-A annual advice letter process (D.91-09-042) and Calaveras sought these adjustments through that process, Resolution T-17585 found that these adjustments should be included in Calaveras’ rate case. The Commission declined to make any adjustments to Calaveras’ CHCF-A support and found that the rehearing of Resolution T-17585 is the appropriate forum to consider any specific adjustments for Calaveras.
Similar to the recent rate case decisions for Ponderosa, Sierra and Cal-Ore, the Calaveras’ decision also adopted results of operations figures for all regulatory purposes. Similar to the rate case decision for Cal-Ore, the Commission adopted an advice letter true-up process to address the revenue shortfall resulting from the significant delay in the adoption of a decision.
A copy of the decision adopted by the Commission is available at: http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PublishedDocs/Published/G000/M213/K918/213918083.PDF
Decision Adopting Amendments to the Commission’s Right-of-Way Rules to Encompass Competitive Local Exchange Carriers’ Wireless Facilities (Item 22, Adopted on Consent Agenda)
The Commission adopted a decision in its proceeding considering issues related to the use of utility poles amending the Right-of-Way Rules (ROW Rules) consistent with federal law to provide competitive local exchange carriers (CLECs) with expanded nondiscriminatory access to public utility infrastructure for the purpose of installing antennas and other wireless telecommunications facilities. The adopted amendments to the ROW Rules include a default “per-foot fee” for CLECs’ wireless pole attachments.
According to the Commission, D.98-10-058, as modified by D.16-01-046, adopted rules to provide CLECs, commercial mobile radio service (CMRS) carriers, and cable television (CATV) corporations with nondiscriminatory access to public utility infrastructure that is owned or controlled by (1) large and midsized incumbent local exchange carriers; and (2) three electric utilities consisting of Pacific Gas and Electric Company, San Diego Gas & Electric Company, and Southern California Edison Company. The new decision expands the ROW Rules to include all CLEC wireless facilities that are necessary or useful for the provision of telecommunications services authorized by CLECs’ certificates of public convenience and necessity.
The adopted order (Decision 18-04-007) is available at: http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PublishedDocs/Published/G000/M213/K609/213609261.PDF
Commission Holds Proposed Decision that Would Grant Authority to Southern California Edison Company to Lease Fiber Optic Cables to Cellco Partnership d/b/a Verizon Wireless. (Held on Consent Agenda, Item 3)
The Commission held for further review a Proposed Decision in Application proceeding A.17-02-001 that would grant authority to Southern California Edison Company (“SCE”) for authority to lease certain fiber optic cables to Cellco Partnership d/b/a Verizon Wireless (“Cellco”) under the Master Dark Fiber Lease Agreement Pursuant to Public Utilities Code Section 851. The Proposed Decision would reject the request in the application for a 90/10 ratepayers/shareholders revenue allocation ratio. The revenue allocation pursuant to this decision would be 75 percent to ratepayers and 25 percent to shareholders. Under the terms and conditions of the Master Lease Agreement, SCE would grant Cellco an exclusive lease for the use of certain optical fibers along various cable routes within Southern California.
The latest version of the Proposed Decision that would grant the requested authority to SCE is available at the following link: http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PublishedDocs/Published/G000/M213/K245/213245565.PDF
Commissioner Randolph provided a report on adoption of an update to the Job Description for Commissioners by the Commission’s Policy and Governance Committee. The report is available at the following link: http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PublishedDocs/Published/G000/M213/K625/213625297.PDF.
Commissioner Rechtschaffen provided a report on adoption of the Tribal Consultation Policy by the Commission’s Policy and Governance Committee. The report is available at the following link: http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PublishedDocs/Published/G000/M213/K627/213627312.PDF.
Closed Session (announced after conclusion of the agenda meeting)
Commission denies City of San Bruno Application for Rehearing of D. 17-09-023 (Confidentiality Proceeding) (Item 66, adopted in Closed Session)
The City of San Bruno sought rehearing of the September 2017 order in the confidentiality proceeding challenging the validity of processes set forth in various sections of GO 66-D. In its rehearing application, San Bruno contended that these processes violated their statutory and constitutional rights to access public records alleging that allege that the lack of a fixed time frame for the completion of the resolution process (Section 6.1 of GO 66-D) and rehearing process (Section 6.2 of GO 66-D) violate provisions in the Government Code and the California Constitution. The Commission found San Bruno’s argument that, without time limits, the Commission will utilize the GO 66-D, §§ 6.1 and 6.2 processes to indefinitely delay public access to records to be based on speculation at odds with the Commission’s longstanding practices supporting disclosure and its progressive development of rules to promote public access to records in its possession.
The order denying rehearing (D. 18-04-032) is available at: http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/PublishedDocs/Published/G000/M213/K567/213567386.PDF