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South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting
February 10, 2017, at 9:30 A.M. CST
Room 413, Capitol Building
Pierre, South Dakota

MINUTES OF THE COMMISSION MEETING

Chairperson: Kristie Fiegen called the meeting to order. Present were: Commissioners: Gary Hanson and Chris Nelson; Commission Attorneys: Karen Cremer and Adam de Hueck; Commission Advisor: Greg Rislov; Staff Attorneys: Amanda Reiss and Kristen Edwards; Staff Analysts: Patrick Steffensen, Darren Kearney, Joseph Rezac, Brittany Mehlhaff, Jon Thurber, and Lorena Reichert; Consumer Affairs Supervisor: Deb Gregg; and Staff: Katlyn Gustafson.

Present were:
Brian Rounds, AESL Consulting; Brett Koenecke, May, Adam, Gerdes & Thompson LLP representing Montana-Dakota Utilities; Margo Northrup, Riter, Rogers, Wattier, & Northrup LLP, representing South Dakota Network; and Rich Coit, South Dakota Telecommunications Association.

Joining the meeting by telephone were:
Al Brogan, NorthWestern Corporation dba NorthWestern Energy; William Taylor, Taylor Law Firm, LLC, representing Consolidated Edison Development, Inc.; Tamie Aberle, Montana-Dakota Utilities; Bryce Haugen, Cary Stephenson and Jason Weiers, Otter Tail Power Company; Carey Roesel, Technologies Management, Inc., representing Wide Voice, LLC; and Jason Topp, Qwest Corporation dba CenturyLink QC.

Administration

1.     Approval of the minutes of the Commission meetings held on January 17, and January 27, 2017. (Staff: Joy Lashley)

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the minutes of the Commission meetings held on January 17, and January 27, 2017. 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 75 contacts since the last report was prepared for the January 27, 2017, Commission meeting.

Five contacts involved telecommunication services, 33 contacts involved electrical services, six contacts were related to natural gas services, five contacts were related to wireless service, two contacts were related to Dakota Access Pipeline, one contact was related to the Keystone XL Pipeline, seven contacts were related to the Do Not Call Registry, one contact was related to Wind Energy and 15 contacts were related to issues not regulated by the PUC.

Complaints received in 2014: 1,914 of the 1,916 have been resolved.

Complaints received in 2017: 187 of the 202 have been resolved.

Electric

1.     EL16-021     In the Matter of the Complaint by Consolidated Edison Development, Inc. against NorthWestern Corporation dba NorthWestern Energy for Establishing a Purchase Power Agreement (Staff Analysts: Jon Thurber, Darren Kearney, Joseph Rezac; Staff Attorneys: Amanda Reiss, Kristen Edwards)

Mr. William Taylor, Taylor Law Firm, LLC, representing Consolidated Edison Development, Inc, (Consolidated), asked that the Commission grant Consolidated’s Motion to Amend the Complaint. Mr. Al Brogan, NorthWestern Corporation dba NorthWestern Energy (NorthWestern), stated NorthWestern supported the motion. Ms. Amanda Reiss, staff attorney, recommended that the Commission approve Consolidated’s request.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to grant the Motion to Amend the Complaint. Motion carried 3-0.

2.     EL16-035     In the Matter of the Petition of Otter Tail Power Company for Approval of the Transmission Cost Recovery Rider Rate (Staff Analysts: Patrick Steffensen, Lorena Reichert; Staff Attorney: Amanda Reiss)

Mr. Bryce Haugen, Otter Tail Power Company (OTP), asked that the Commission approve OTP’s TCR rate factor and revised tariff sheet with an effective date of March 1, 2017. Mr. Patrick Steffensen, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission approve OTP’s request.

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the TCR rate factor and revised tariff sheet with an effective date of March 1, 2017. Motion carried 3-0.

3.     EL17-001      In the Matter of the Filing by Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. for Approval of Tariff Revisions regarding Its Meter Data and Privacy Policy Rate 140 (Staff Analyst: Joseph Rezac; Staff Attorney: Amanda Reiss)

Natural Gas

1.     NG17-001       In the Matter of the Filing by Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. for Approval of Tariff Revisions regarding Its Meter Data and Privacy Policy Rate 140 (Staff Analyst: Joseph Rezac; Staff Attorney: Amanda Reiss)

Ms. Tamie Aberle, Montana-Dakota Utilities (MDU), asked that the Commission approve the tariff revisions in dockets EL17-001 and NG17-001, with an effective date of February 10, 2017. Mr. Joseph Rezac, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission approve MDU’s requests.

     In dockets EL17-001 and NG17-001, Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the tariff revisions with an effective date of February 10, 2017.Motion carried 3-0. 

Telecommunications

1.     TC17-001     In the Matter of the Application of Wide Voice, LLC for a Certificate of Authority to Provide Local Exchange and Interexchange Long Distance Services in South Dakota (Staff Analyst: Patrick Steffensen; Staff Attorney: Kristen Edwards)

Mr. Rich Coit, South Dakota Telecommunications Association (SDTA), and Ms. Margo Northrup, Riter, Rogers, Wattier, & Northrup LLP, representing South Dakota Network (SDN), asked that the Commission grant SDTA and SDN’s requests. Mr. Carey Roesel, Technologies Management, Inc., representing Wide Voice, LLC (Wide Voice), stated Wide Voice had no objection to SDTA and SDN’s requests for intervention. Ms. Kristen Edwards, staff attorney, recommended that the Commission grant intervention to SDTA and SDN.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to grant intervention to SDTA and SDN. Motion carried 3-0.

2.     TC17-002     In the Matter of the Filing by Qwest Corporation dba CenturyLink QC for Approval of Waiver of Switched Access Cost Study (Staff Analyst: Patrick Steffensen; Staff Attorney: Kristen Edwards)

Mr. Jason Topp, Qwest Corporation dba CenturyLink QC (CenturyLink), asked that the Commission grant the Waiver of the Switched Access Cost Study as requested by CenturyLink. Mr. Patrick Steffensen, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission approve CenturyLink’s request.

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to grant the Waiver of the Switched Access Cost Study as requested by CenturyLink.Motion carried 3-0.

3.     TC17-003     In the Matter of the Approval of a Carrier Partner for Interconnected VoIP Provider Amendment to the Interconnection Agreement between Qwest Corporation dba CenturyLink QC and Airus, Inc. (Staff Analyst: Patrick Steffensen; Staff Attorney: Kristen Edwards)

Mr. Jason Topp, Qwest Corporation dba CenturyLink QC, (CenturyLink), asked that the Commission approve the amendment to the interconnection agreement. Ms. Kristen Edwards, staff attorney, recommended that the Commission approve CenturyLink’s request.

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

There being no further business, at the hour of 10:05 a.m., the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission meeting adjourned.

/s/Joy Lashley     .
Joy Lashley
Administrative Assistant
PUC Email
February 10, 2017