On April 30, 2019, The Brooklyn Union Gas Company, doing business as National Grid NY, requested that the New York State Public Service Commission approve a proposed increase in its gas delivery rates to be effective March 28, 2020. National Grid serves approximately 1.2 million customers in Brooklyn, Staten Island and Queens, New York.
New York State Department of Public Service (DPS) Staff is in the process of evaluating whether – or to what extent – a rate increase is justified. DPS Staff 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 National Grid filing is also underway by other parties to the proceeding. The information contained in this factsheet sets forth the Company’s filing and does not reflect DPS Staff’s ongoing evaluation of the proposal.
Public Statement Hearings and Informational Sessions
The Commission is seeking comment on the proposed increase to gas delivery rates. Interested members of the public are invited to attend and provide comments on the proposal. Each hearing will be proceeded by an informational forum where a National Grid representative will provide an overview of the Company’s proposal and DPS Staff will explain the review process it conducts pursuant to the Public Service Law and how individuals can participate. It is not necessary to make an appointment in advance or present written material in order to speak at the hearings.*
The dates, times and locations are as follows:
According to the filing, National Grid requests funding for modernizing the Company’s gas infrastructure and networks, implementing safety improvements, enhancing storm hardening and resiliency, reducing methane emissions, advancing non-pipeline alternatives by expanding demand response and geothermal programs, and improving customer information systems, and affordability, economic development and energy efficiency programs.
|Wednesday, July 31|
City University of New York Law School Auditorium
2 Court Square
Long Island City, NY 11101
|Information Session – 1:00 pm|
Public Statement Hearing – 2:00 pm
|Wednesday, July 31 |
Brooklyn Borough Hall
Borough Hall Courtroom
209 Joralemon Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
|Information Session – 6:00 pm|
Public Statement Hearing – 7:00 pm
|Wednesday, August 21|
St. George Library Center
5 Central Avenue
Staten Island, NY 10301
|Information Session – 1:00 pm|
Public Statement Hearing – 2:00 pm
A gas bill consists of two parts: a delivery charge and a supply charge. Through delivery charges, the utility recovers the cost to transport the gas to customers throughout the utility’s gas delivery system. The delivery charge is regulated by the Commission. Through the supply charge, 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.
Rate Case Components:
Under National Grid’s proposal, gas delivery rates would be modified to increase the Company’s annual gas delivery revenues by approximately $236.8 million (a 19.3% increase in delivery revenue increase, or 13.6% in total revenues). If the proposed rate request were to be approved, the Company estimates that the total average monthly bill for gas service to a residential heating customer will increase by approximately $16.66 (an increase of 17.78% on the delivery portion of the bill or 11.99% on the total bill). The projected residential heating customer’s total bill impact is based on estimated supply costs.
The full text of the rate case may be viewed online at DPS’s www.dps.ny.gov website. From the homepage, click on “Search,” and enter the case number (19-G-0309).
The Commission strongly believes that obtaining public input is a critical component of the rate-setting process. Stakeholders, such as consumers, government agencies and officials, public interest and environmental groups, and industry representatives, are invited to participate in the process, review the proposals, and submit comments.
An Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) will preside over the gathering of public comments and all evidence relating to the rate requests. 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 public or the Commission.
- Upgrading Infrastructure and Enhancing Gas Safety: National Grid proposes a goal of reducing total methane emissions 60% by 2035 by replacing 70 miles of leak prone distribution pipe annually and repairing system leaks. National Grid proposes to upgrade its information technology systems to better monitor and manage its systems and stay ahead of emerging security threats. The Company also identifies additional safety measures such as an enhanced inspection program to oversee construction work and a program to distribute residential methane detectors to customers.
- Improving Customer Service: National Grid proposes to eliminate credit card fees and expand its Low Income EmPower Replacement Program to moderate-income customers. The Company proposes to expand the Low-and Moderate-Income Oil to Gas Conversation Programs, which would include offerings of high-efficiency heating, water heating systems and smart thermostats. The Company also wants to replace its current 30-year-old Customer Information System in 2023.
- Clean Energy Alternatives: National Grid proposes a green gas tariff that will give customers the choice to access renewable natural gas for part or all of their natural gas supply. The Company proposes to expand its geothermal pilot that will test a utility-ownership business model. For prospective customers outside of the existing gas network, National Grid proposes a Clean Conversion Program to educate customers about their energy options.
There are also 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 www.dps.ny.gov 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 19-G-0309 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 email@example.com 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 July 31 or August 21, 2019 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,
www.dps.ny.gov, 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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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 “National Grid” (19-G-0309).
- 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 19-G-0309 “National Grid.” Comments received via the Opinion Line are not transcribed, but a summary is provided to the Commission for their consideration.
19-G-0309 KEDNY fact sheet final 7-22-19.pdf
Please click here for a printable version
Comments submitted via these alternative means will be accepted at any point while this proceeding is pending, but are requested by August 26, 2019 to ensure full consideration. All comments will become part of the record considered by the Commission.