Substitute Senate Bill No. 23

Public Act No. 00-107

An Act Concerning The Participation Of The Department Of Public Utility Control Before Federal Agencies And The Use Of Consultants By The Office Of Consumer Counsel.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Section 16-6a of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:

(a) The Department of Public Utility Control is authorized to participate in proceedings before agencies of the federal government and the federal courts on matters affecting utility services rendered or to be rendered in this state.

(b) [From February 14, 1997, to April 1, 1999, for] For any proceeding before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the United States Department of Energy or the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission or appeal thereof, the Attorney General, upon request of the department, may retain outside legal counsel in accordance with section 3-125 to participate in such proceedings on behalf of the department. All reasonable and proper expenses of such outside legal counsel shall be borne by the public service companies, certified telecommunications providers, electric suppliers or gas registrants that are affected by the decisions of such proceedings and shall be paid at such times and in such manner as the department directs, provided such expenses shall be apportioned in proportion to [each affected company's] the revenues of each affected entity as reported to the department for purposes of section 16-49 for the most recent period, and provided further such expenses shall not exceed two hundred fifty thousand dollars per proceeding, including any appeals thereof, in any calendar year unless the department finds good cause for exceeding the limit and the affected [companies] entities have an opportunity, after reasonable notice, to comment on the proposed overage. All such legal expenses shall be recognized by the department as proper business expenses of the affected [companies] entities for rate-making purposes, as provided in section 16-19e, if applicable.

Sec. 2. Subsection 16-18a of the general statutes is amended by adding subsection (c) as follows:

(NEW) (c) Notwithstanding any provision of the general statutes, the department and the Office of Consumer Counsel shall not retain any consultant under subsection (a) of this section in connection with any proceeding involving telecommunications if such consultant, at the time the consultant would be retained, is serving as a consultant to a certified telecommunications provider or a telephone company that would be affected by such proceeding, unless each party and intervenor to such proceeding agrees in writing to waive the provisions of this subsection.

Sec. 3. This act shall take effect from its passage.

Approved May 26, 2000