MPSC issues 2016 annual report

LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today issued its annual report to Governor Snyder and the Michigan Legislature.

Highlights of the 2016 report include the following:

  • Through cooperation with the Michigan Agency for Energy (MAE), the MPSC assisted consumers and businesses with 11,000 complaints and inquiries related to energy and telecommunications service.

  • In 2016, the Commission issued 493 orders consisting of 262 electric orders, 163 telecommunications orders, and 68 natural gas orders. The Commission also issued 26 minute actions.

  • The MPSC revised the retail natural gas rates of Consumers Energy Company and DTE Gas Company, the retail electric rates for Upper Peninsula Power Company, and the retail steam rates of Detroit Thermal Company.

  • The MPSC evaluated electric generation resource adequacy over the next five years, finding that capacity supplies are expected to continue to tighten in both the state and the Midwest through 2020 as older electric generating units go offline.

  • The MPSC approved the creation of the Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corporation (UMERC), a Michigan-only jurisdictional utility composed of the Michigan-based electric and gas service territories previously served by Wisconsin Electric Power Company and Wisconsin Public Service Corporation.

  • The MPSC performed inspections and investigated all jurisdictional incidents that met the US Department of Transportation requirements, through the Commission’s gas safety engineers.

  • The MPSC approved or amended licenses for 11 telephone companies, revised Emergency 9-1-1 Services Multiline Telephone System rules, approved 64 carriers as eligible telecommunications carriers to apply for federal Universal Service Funding, and upgraded its Intrastate Telecommunications Service Provider database and software.

  • The MPSC approved a request to designate 211 Northeast Michigan Call Center as the 2-1-1 answering point for telephone exchanges in St. Clair County, making 2-1-1, the abbreviated phone number that connects people with information and resources, available statewide.

  • Through cooperation with MAE, the MPSC continued to work to resolve issues related to system support resource (SSR) costs being borne by customers in the Upper Peninsula, including removing the final SSR charges, effective November 2016.

  • Through cooperation with MAE, the MPSC conducted an investigation into estimated billing practices by Consumers Energy Company, ordering the company to make changes to prohibit the use of estimated bills over an extended period of time, and requiring the company to pay a fine of $515,800 for violations of the Commission’s billing rules.

  • At the end of 2016, the Legislature passed and the Governor signed into law Public Acts 341 and 342 of 2016, comprehensive energy policy legislation. The bills, signed by Governor Snyder on Dec. 21, 2016, update Michigan laws related to rate case processing, integrated resource planning, electric choice, code of conduct, renewable energy, energy waste reduction, distributed generation, and on-bill financing, and take effect April 20.

  • The MPSC was included in the efforts of Governor Snyder’s 21st Century Infrastructure Commission.

  • During 2016, the Commission engaged in strategic planning activities to identify strategic priorities, objectives, and action steps to ensure alignment with Governor Rick Snyder’s energy policy goals focused on reliability, affordability, adaptability, and protecting the environment. The strategic planning efforts also resulted in the revision of its mission and goals.

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