CPUC Issues Rulemaking to Address Electric Utility Failures to Connect or Upgrade Service for Electric Consumers

Energy Law  

January 31, 2024

On January 30, 2024, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) issued Rulemaking 24-01-008, which will establish requirements and timelines for electric utilities to connect new customers or to upgrade existing ones. The Rulemaking was instituted at the direction of Assembly Bill 50 and Senate Bill 410, both of which were enacted to address an increasing statewide issue of months- or years-long delays in electric service connections and upgrades.

The Rulemaking, which must be concluded by September 30, 2024, will decide the criteria for what constitutes “timely” utility service connections and service upgrades, establish annual reporting requirements for the utilities, set parameters for an annual public workshop at which the utilities will discuss their reports, and create a forum for docketing the annual reports and any necessary related actions.

Interested stakeholders are invited to submit opening comments by February 19, 2024, addressing the following issues:

  • What is a reasonable average and maximum timeframe for energizing new customers and upgrading existing ones?
  • What procedures should be established to allow customers to report delays?
  • What should the utilities’ annual reporting requirements be?
  • What other actions should the CPUC take to implement the relevant provisions of AB 50 and SB 410.

Opening and reply comments (due February 29) will be followed by a public workshop and further opportunities for input on a CPUC staff proposal and/or draft decision establishing the proposed customer connection framework.

For additional information, please contact Megan Somogyi, Jedediah Gibson, and Brian Cragg.