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Sponsors: Reps. Cato, Sandifer and Lee
Document Path: l:\council\bills\ggs\22262htc05.doc
Introduced in the House on June 14, 2005
Introduced in the Senate on June 14, 2005
Adopted by the General Assembly on June 14, 2005
Summary: Office of Regulatory Staff
HISTORY OF LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS
Date Body Action Description with journal page number ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 6/14/2005 House Introduced, adopted, sent to Senate 6/14/2005 Senate Adopted, returned to House with concurrence SJ-49
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VERSIONS OF THIS BILL
TO HONOR AND RECOGNIZE THE SOUTH CAROLINA OFFICE OF REGULATORY STAFF FOR AN OUTSTANDING FIRST YEAR IN ADVOCATING SAFE AND FAIR UTILITY REGULATION, AND TO EXTEND THE OFFICE AND ITS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, DUKES SCOTT, BEST WISHES IN ITS FUTURE WORK ON BEHALF OF SOUTH CAROLINIANS.
Whereas, the South Carolina Office of Regulatory Staff (ORS) was created in 2004 to address a growing need for the separation of the adjudicative function of utility regulation from the investigative, legal, prosecutorial, and educational functions of utility regulation; and
Whereas, the Office of Regulatory Staff seeks to represent the public interest of South Carolina in utility regulation by balancing the concerns of the using and consuming public, the financial integrity of public utilities, and the economic development of South Carolina; and
Whereas, even in its infancy, the Office of Regulatory Staff has made great strides in responding to the needs of South Carolina consumers, as it handled over three thousand complaints and inquiries since its beginning and has saved consumers approximately $316,522.00 in investigation of complaints; and
Whereas, attuned to the concerns of the elderly, the agency worked to develop a list of elderly and disabled people who needed attention prior to power cutoffs and mediated a temporary agreement with local utility companies not to turn off consumers' power when freezing temperatures are forecast within twenty-four hours; and
Whereas, the ORS addresses public interest in specific areas, including: Consumer Services, Electric, Natural Gas, Telecommunications, Transportation, and Water/Wastewater. Each specific area has its own team of staff and has made incredible progress in facilitating negotiations among utility companies and consumers; and
Whereas, among the first on the scene at the January 7, 2005, Graniteville accident, ORS rail inspectors played a key role in managing the situation and the ensuing investigation; and
Whereas, the agency has recently become involved in efforts to halt the flow of bacteria-ridden wastewater into a tributary of the Congaree River and advocates that a larger sewer system be put in place and the responsible utility's bond be revoked by the Public Service Commission; and
Whereas, in April 2005, the ORS initiated and facilitated a full settlement of all issues in SCE&G's annual review of base rates for fuel costs, saving industrial and commercial customers 12.5 million dollars and residential consumers approximately 6.5 million dollars; and
Whereas, the ORS also facilitated another settlement in May 2005, in the Progress Energy fuel cases, calling a conference of all parties and reaching an agreement that would reduce the annual increase to residential consumers by thirteen million dollars and to commercial and large industrial consumers by over thirty million dollars; and
Whereas, the immediate success of the ORS is largely due to the tireless leadership and wisdom of Executive Director, Dukes Scott, former commissioner and deputy executive director of the Public Service Commission, who also served with distinction as an administrative law judge; and
Whereas, the General Assembly expects to continue to hear of further success and accomplishment from the Office of Regulatory Staff, and commends the agency for setting a fine example as a public service organization that South Carolina citizens can trust and on which they can depend. Now, therefore,
Be it resolved by the House of Representatives, the Senate concurring:
That the members of the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina, by this resolution, honor and recognize the South Carolina Office of Regulatory Staff for its outstanding first year in advocating safe and fair utility regulation, and extend the office and its Executive Director, Dukes Scott, best wishes in all future endeavors.
Be it further resolved that a copy of this resolution be forwarded to the South Carolina Office of Regulatory Staff's Executive Director, Dukes Scott.
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