Case 16-G-0369: Corning Natural Gas Corporation - Proposed Increase inn Gas Delivery Rates

In June 2016, Corning Natural Gas Corporation (Corning) requested that the New York State Public Service Commission approve a proposed increase in its gas delivery rates. Corning serves approximately 15,000 customers in Chemung, Cortland and Steuben counties in New York.

Upon receipt of the rate filing, Department of Public Service (DPS) Staff began an analysis of the Company’s request to evaluate whether – or to what extent – a rate increase is justified. DPS represents the public interest in rate proceedings and evaluates such requests with the goal of ensuring safe and reliable service at just and reasonable rates. Review of the Corning filing is also underway by other parties to the proceeding.

Public Statement Hearings and Information Sessions

The Commission is seeking comment on the proposed increase to gas delivery rates. An Administrative Law Judge will preside over the gathering of public comments and all evidence relating to the rate request. The comments made at the hearings will become part of the formal record in these proceedings and will be presented to the Commission for consideration. Under New York State Law, the Commission must consider a utility’s proposal and may adopt or reject it in whole or in part, or modify it by adopting changes proposed by participating parties, the general public or the Commission.

Interested members of the public were invited to attend the public statement hearings on September 14, 2016 in Corning NY, to provide comments regarding the proposal. The hearings were also preceded by an information session where a Corning representatives described the Company’s filing and an Administrative Law Judge explained the rate case process and how individuals can participate.If you were not able to attend this hearing and wish to make a comment please see the link below.

*Disabled persons requiring special accommodations should contact the DPS at (518) 474-2520 as soon as possible. Telecommunications Relay Service users may request a sign language interpreter by calling the New York Relay Service at 711. Individuals with difficulty understanding or reading English are encouraged to call DPS at 1-800-342-3377 for free language assistance.

    On May 26, 2016, Corning filed a three year plan for new gas delivery rates with the first rate year ending May 31, 2018, the second ending May 31, 2019 and the third ending May 31, 2020. According to the filing, the Company’s proposal will enable Corning to provide safe and reliable gas service through continued modernization of its pipeline infrastructure and customer information technology systems. Corning asserts that the rate request will also allow the Company to provide enhanced low income customer programs, continued area economic development and possible gas expansion initiatives.
    Proposed Rates:

      A gas bill consists of two parts: delivery rates and supply rates. Through delivery rates, the utility recovers the cost to transport the gas to customers throughout the utility’s gas delivery system. The delivery rate is regulated by the Commission. Through the supply rate, the utility recovers the cost of the gas commodity. The cost of the gas commodity is determined by the competitive market place and is not set by the Commission or the utility.

      Corning proposes to increase its annual revenues for gas delivery service by approximately $3.3 million for the first rate year. The Company also proposes to restructure delivery rates so that some current surcharges will be eliminated and the same costs will be included in base rates, on a revenue-neutral basis. In addition to the first year increase, the Company provided information supporting increases of approximately $1.2 million and $0.7 million in each of the two succeeding years. The Company projects that the requested increase in delivery revenues would result in a total annual bill increase for an average residential heating customer of $98.60 the first year, $187.50 the second year and $186.50 the third year for a total increase over three years of approximately $473 (41.8% increase).

    Rate Case Components:
      • System Modernizations: Included in Corning’s proposal is funding to improve pipeline infrastructure and system integrity. Corning proposes to continue replacing bare steel mains on its high and low pressure distribution systems. Additionally, the proposal calls for replacing 400 bare and coated unprotected steel service lines and installing 100 new service lines in each of the rate years. The Company also proposes to upgrade its cyber security measures.
      • Gas Expansion: As part of the rate request, the Company will continue to seek opportunities to expand its service to new customers and new areas.

Rate case documents may be viewed online at DPS’s website. From the homepage, click on “Search,” and enter the case number (16-G-0369) in the “Search by Case Number” field.

    There are several other ways to participate in the rate case process, including:
    • Request Party Status: Some individuals or groups participate in rate cases by becoming a party in the case. Generally, parties commit to contribute to the development of a complete record in a proceeding by conducting discovery, submitting testimony, briefs, or other formal written comments, and/or participating in evidentiary hearings, procedural conferences and other formal events conducted in the case. Interested groups or individuals can submit a request for party status online through the Commission’s website by searching for the case numbers and clicking the “Request for Party Status” link at the top of the Case page. Alternatively, a request form can be downloaded from the website, obtained by calling 518-474-4520 or by writing to the Administrative Law Judge, NYS Public Service Commission, Three Empire State Plaza, Albany, NY 12223. The requestor will be provisionally given party status, subject to the right of other parties to object and subject to the determination of the Administrative Law Judge.
    • Join the Service List: Interested persons who wish to monitor the proceedings of a particular case can do so without the formal commitment to become a party to the proceeding. The persons who subscribe to the service list of a case will receive an e-mail with a direct link to the documents issued by the Commission, such as orders, notices, and rulings. Persons unable or unwilling to receive such electronic notification will receive hard copies of Commission-issued documents by regular mail.

      To register online, click on the “Subscribe to Service List” link at the top of the dedicated page for Case 16-G-0369. A “Service List and Mail Service List Request Form” can be downloaded from the site and the completed form sent by e-mail to Hon. Kathleen H. Burgess, Secretary at or by mail to: Secretary, Public Service Commission, Three Empire State Plaza, Albany, NY 12223-1350.
    • Monitor the Case on the Commission Website: Interested persons who choose not to sign up to receive e-mail notifications can view our website at their convenience to check on the status of a case. All documents filed by parties, correspondence, hearing transcripts, and Commission issued documents in a given case are posted on the website. All comments submitted by the public are posted under the ‘public comments’ tab for the case.
    • Provide Comments: There are opportunities to attend public outreach events to learn about the proposals and provide comments. All comments can be submitted at the public statement hearings held on September 14, 2016 or through the methods below:
        • Via the Department’s Website: Comments may also be entered directly into the case by locating the case via the home page of the Commission’s website,, by clicking on “Search,” and entering the associated case number (noted above) in the “Search by Case Number” field. After clicking to open the case, enter comments in the “Post Comments” section located at the top of the page.
      • Via Mail/E-Mail: Submit comments electronically to Kathleen H. Burgess, Secretary, at or by mail or delivery to Secretary Burgess at the Department of Public Service, Three Empire State Plaza, Albany, New York 12223-1350. Comments delivered in these manners should reference “Corning Natural Gas Corporation” (16-G-0369).

      • Via Toll-Free Opinion Line: Individuals may choose to submit comments by calling the Commission’s toll-free Opinion Line at 1-800-335-2120. This line is set up to receive in-state calls 24-hours a day. Callers should press “1” to leave comments about Case 16-G-0369 “Corning Natural Gas Corp.” Comments received via the Opinion Line are not transcribed, but a summary is provided to the Commission for their consideration.

      Comments submitted via these alternative means will be accepted at any point while this proceeding is pending, but are requested by January 31, 2017, to ensure full consideration. All comments will become part of the record considered by the Commission.

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