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South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting
December 17, 2013, at 9:30 A.M. CST
Room 413, Capitol Building
Pierre, South Dakota

MINUTES OF THE COMMISSION MEETING

Chairman Gary Hanson called the meeting to order. Present were: Commissioners: Chris Nelson and Kristie Fiegen; Commission Counsel: John Smith and Rolayne Wiest; Commission Advisor: Greg Rislov; Staff Attorneys: Karen Cremer and Kristen Edwards; Staff Analysts: Brian Rounds, Darren Kearney, Robin Meyerink, Eric Paulson, Brittany Mehlhaff, David Henry, Boice Hillmer, and Patrick Steffensen; Consumer Affairs Supervisor: Deb Gregg; and Staff: Tina Douglas

Also present were:
Brett Koenecke, May, Adam, Gerdes & Thompson, representing Iberdrola Renewables, Inc. and MCC Telephony of the Midwest, LLC.

Joining the meeting by telephone were:
Meredith Moore, Cutler & Donahoe LLP, representing Garretson Municipal Gas Utilities; Tim Seck, Iberdrola Renewables, Inc.; Rick Ramstad, Crew and Crew Attorneys at Law, representing Crooks Municipal Gas; and Sabrina Meierhenry, Meierhenry Sargent LLP, representing Humboldt Municipal Gas Utilities.

(NOTE: For the purpose of continuity, these minutes are not necessarily in chronological order.)

Administration

1.     Approval of the Minutes of the Commission Meetings Held on November 22 and December 3, 2013, and the Ad Hoc Meeting on December 5, 2013 (Staff: Tina Douglas and Joy Lashley)

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the minutes of the Commission Meetings held on November 22 and December 3, 2013, and the Ad Hoc Meeting on December 5, 2013. Motion carried 3-0.

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 65 contacts since the last report was prepared for the December 3, 2013 Commission meeting.

14 of the contacts involved telecommunication services, 14 of the contacts involved electrical services, 3 of the contacts involved natural gas service, 10 contacts involved cell phone service, 10 contacts were related to the Do Not Call Registry, 2 contacts were regarding Wind Energy and 12 contacts were related to issues not regulated by the PUC.

1,773 of the 1,803 complaints received in 2013 have been resolved.

Electric

1.     EL08-031     In the Matter of the Application by Buffalo Ridge II LLC a Subsidiary of Iberdrola Renewables, Inc., for an Energy Conversion Facility Permit for the Construction of the Buffalo Ridge II Wind Farm and Associated Collection Substation and Electric Interconnection System. (Staff Analyst: Brian Rounds; Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Mr. Brett Koenecke, May, Adam, Gerdes & Thompson, representing Iberdrola Renewables, Inc. (Iberdrola), asked that the Commission approve Iberdrola's request for release of the construction bond. Ms. Karen Cremer, staff attorney, recommended that the Commission grant the request for release of the construction bond and authorize the Executive Director or General Counsel to execute any necessary release documents to release Safeco Insurance Company of America Bond No. 6659429.

     Commissioner Nelson moved to grant the request for release of construction bond and authorize the Executive Director or General Counsel to execute any necessary release documents to release Safeco Insurance Company of America Bond No. 6659429. Motion carried 3-0.

Pipeline Safety

1.     PS13-001     In the Matter of the Filing by Commission Pipeline Safety Staff for Approval of a Penalty for a Pipeline Safety Violation by Humboldt Municipal Gas Utilities Gas (Staff Analyst: Mary Zanter; Staff Attorney: Kristen Edwards)

A lengthy discussion took place regarding docket PS13-001. An audio of the discussion can be found on the PUC website under Commission Actions, Commission Meeting Archives, 2013, December 17, 2013, recording located at:
http://puc.sd.gov/commission/media/2013/puc12172013.mp3

     Commissioner Nelson moved to grant the Request for Dismissal without Prejudice. Motion carried 3-0.
                             
2.      PS13-002     In the Matter of the Filing by Commission Pipeline Safety Staff for Approval of a Penalty for Pipeline Safety Violation by Crooks Municipal Gas (Staff Analyst: Mary Zanter; Staff Attorney: Kristen Edwards)

A lengthy discussion took place regarding docket PS13-002. An audio of the discussion can be found on the PUC website under Commission Actions, Commission Meeting Archives, 2013, December 17, 2013, recording located at:
http://puc.sd.gov/commission/media/2013/puc12172013.mp3

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to defer until Crooks Municipal Gas was present. Motion carried 3-0.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to reconsider deferment. Motion carried 3-0.

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to grant request for Dismissal without Prejudice. Motion carried 3-0. 

3.      PS13-003     In the Matter of the Filing by Commission Pipeline Safety Staff for Approval of a Penalty for a Pipeline Safety Violation by Garretson Municipal Gas Utilities (Staff Analyst: Mary Zanter; Staff Attorney: Kristen Edwards)

A lengthy discussion took place regarding docket PS13-003. An audio of the discussion can be found on the PUC website under Commission Actions, Commission Meeting Archives, 2013, December 17, 2013, recording located at:
http://puc.sd.gov/commission/media/2013/puc12172013.mp3

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to grant the Request for Dismissal without Prejudice. Motion carried 3-0.

Telecommunications

1.     TC13-116     In the Matter of the Filing by MCC Telephony of the Midwest, LLC for Approval of Revisions to Tariff No. 1 (Staff Analyst: Eric Paulson; Staff Attorney: Kristen Edwards)

Mr. Brett Koenecke, May, Adam, Gerdes & Thompson, representing MCC Telephony of the Midwest, LLC (MCC), asked that the Commission approve the revisions to MCC's access services tariff. Mr. Eric Paulson, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission grant MCC's request with an effective date on and after November 9, 2013.

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to approve the revisions to the access services tariff with a November 9, 2013 effective date. Motion carried 3-0.

     There being no further business, at the hour of 10:28 a.m. the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission meeting adjourned.

/S/Joy Lashley
Joy Lashley
Administrative Assistant
puc@state.sd.us
December 17, 2013