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South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting
October 11, 2011, at 1:30 P.M. CDT
Room 412, Capitol Building
Pierre, South Dakota

MINUTES OF THE COMMISSION MEETING

Commissioner Chris Nelson called the meeting to Order. Present were: Commission Counsel: John Smith and Rolayne Wiest; Commission Advisor: Greg Rislov; Staff Attorneys: Karen Cremer and Kara Semmler; Staff Analysts: Dave Jacobson, Matthew Tysdal, and Ross Pedersen; Consumer Affairs Supervisor: Deb Gregg; and Staff: Demaris Axthelm and Joy Irving.

Also present were: Jim Wilcox and Debra Sundin, Northern States Power Company dba Xcel Energy, and Bob Riter, Riter, Rogers, Wattier & Northrup, LLP, representing Venture Communications Cooperative.

Joining the meeting by telephone were: Chairman Gary Hanson; Commissioner Kristie Fiegen; Staff Analysts: Chris Daugaard and Brian Rounds; Kyle Wiese, Gunderson, Palmer, Nelson & Ashmore, LLC, representing Alltel; Rod Bowar, Kennebec Telephone Company; Gary Joseph, WiMacTel, Inc; Meredith Moore, Cutler & Donahoe, LLP representing Kennebec Telephone Company; Bridget McLaughlin, Jeremy Petersen, and Kari Valley, Northern States Power Company dba Xcel Energy.

Consumer Reports

1.     Status Report on Consumer Utility Inquiries and Complaints Received by the Commission. (Consumer Affairs: Deb Gregg)

The Commission received a total of 73 contacts since the last report was prepared for the September 27, 2011 Commission meeting.

8 of the contacts involved telecommunications service, 18 of the contacts involved electrical service, 8 contacts involved natural gas service, 1 contact involved gas and electric service, 13 contacts involved cell phone service, 8 contacts were related to the Do Not Call Registry, and 17 contacts were related to issues not regulated by the PUC.

2,253 of the 2,332 complaints received in 2011 have been resolved.

Electric

1.     EL11-013     In the Matter of the Petition of Northern States Power Company dba Xcel Energy for Approval to Establish a Demand Side Management Program and Cost Recovery Tariff and for Approval of its 2011 Planned Costs to be included in its rates (Staff Analysts: Brian Rounds, Ross Pedersen, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

A lengthy discussion regarding Xcel Energy's request to establish a demand side management program, cost recovery tariff, and request for approval for their 2011 planned costs to be included in their rates can be found on the PUC website under Commission Actions, Commission Meeting Archives, 2011, October 11, 2011, recording located at: http://puc.sd.gov/Archives/2011/default.aspx.

     Chairman Hanson moved to approve Xcel's DSM Plan as filed in the original Petition, including the filed tariff sheets, with the residential Ground Source Heat Pump and Residential Home Lighting Programs and budgets for them re-included in the Plan, to approve Xcel's request that it be afforded reasonable flexibility, within the limits of the DSM Plan's overall approved budget ceiling, to apply funds to specific programs as interest in them and the viability of them is demonstrated in actual practice during the program year, and to approve the DSM Plan total budget amount of $775,041. Motion carried 3-0.

Telecommunications

1.     TC06-159     In the Matter of the Petition of Venture Communications Cooperative for Arbitration pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to Resolve Issues Relating to an Interconnection Agreement with Alltel Communications, Inc. (Staff Analyst: Dave Jacobson, Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)

Bob Riter, representing Venture Communications Cooperative, and Kyle Wiese, representing Alltel Communications, Inc. asked jointly that the Commission grant an order to dismiss this matter. Kara Semmler, staff attorney, supported request and recommended the Commission grant dismissal.

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the joint stipulation and dismiss all claims with prejudice. Motion carried 3-0.

2.     TC07-114     In the Matter of the Petition of Kennebec Telephone Company for Arbitration Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to Resolve Issues Relating to an Interconnection Agreement with Alltel Communications, Inc. (Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Meredith Moore, representing Kennebec Telephone Company, provided a brief history and asked the Commission to close this docket.  Karen Cremer, staff attorney, recommended dismissing and closing this docket.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to dismiss and close the docket. Motion carried 3-0.

3.     TC11-057     In the Matter of the Application of WiMacTel, Inc. for a Certificate of Authority to Provide Interexchange Long Distance Services in South Dakota (Staff Analyst: Chris Daugaard, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Gary Joseph, WiMacTel, Inc. asked the Commission to approve a Certificate of Authority. Chris Daugaard, staff analyst, recommended granting a Certificate of Authority while disallowing the use of prepaid cards.

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve a Certificate of Authority for WiMacTel. Motion carried 3-0.

4.     TC11-084     In the Matter of Qwest Corporation and Broadvox-CLEC, LLC Request for an Amendment to the Wireline Interconnection Agreement (Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Karen Cremer, staff attorney, recommended that the Commission approve the request for an amendment to the Wireline Interconnection Agreement.  Ms. Cremer stated that the amendment was properly filed, properly executed, and does not contain discriminatory provisions.

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the amendment to the interconnection agreement. Motion carried 3-0. 

5.     TC11-085     In the Matter of the Approval of a Type 2 Wireless Interconnection Agreement between Qwest Corporation and 365 Wireless, LLC for the State of South Dakota (Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Karen Cremer, staff attorney, recommended that the Commission approve the agreement. Ms. Cremer stated the agreement was properly filed, properly executed and does not appear to contain discriminatory provisions. 
        
     Commissioner Fiegen moved to approve the interconnection agreement. Motion carried 3-0.

There being no further business, at the hour of 2:33 p.m., the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission meeting adjourned. The next Commission meeting is scheduled for October 17, 2011.

 

/S/Joy Irving
Joy Irving
Administrative Assistant
puc@state.sd.us
October 11, 2011