Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Commonwealth Edison Company v. Illinois Commerce Commission

April 04, 2002

COMMONWEALTH EDISON COMPANY, PETITIONER,
v.
ILLINOIS COMMERCE COMMISSION; CENTRAL ILLINOIS LIGHT COMPANY; CENTRAL ILLINOIS PUBLIC SERVICE COMPANY; ILLINOIS POWER COMPANY; INTERSTATE POWER COMPANY; MIDAMERICAN ENERGY COMPANY; MT. CARMEL PUBLIC UTILITY COMPANY; SOUTH BELOIT WATER, GAS, AND ELECTRIC COMPANY; AND UNION ELECTRIC COMPANY, RESPONDENTS (AES NEWENERGY, INC.; ALLIANT ENERGY CORPORATION; ASSOCIATION OF ILLINOIS ELECTRIC COOPERATIVES; BLACKHAWK ENERGY SERVICES, L.L.C.; ENRON ENERGY SERVICES, INC.; ILLINOIS INDUSTRIAL ENERGY CONSUMERS; METROPOLITAN CHICAGO HEALTHCARE COUNCIL; NICOR ENERGY, L.L.C.; PEOPLES ENERGY SERVICE CORPORATION; THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS; AND UNICOM ENERGY, INC., INTERVENORS).



Petition for review of order of Illinois Commerce Commission. ICC No. 00--0494

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Justice Geiger

Released for publication May 1, 2002.

COMMONWEALTH EDISON COMPANY, PETITIONER,
v.
ILLINOIS COMMERCE COMMISSION; CENTRAL ILLINOIS LIGHT COMPANY; CENTRAL ILLINOIS PUBLIC SERVICE COMPANY; ILLINOIS POWER COMPANY; INTERSTATE POWER COMPANY; MIDAMERICAN ENERGY COMPANY; MT. CARMEL PUBLIC UTILITY COMPANY; SOUTH BELOIT WATER, GAS, AND ELECTRIC COMPANY; AND UNION ELECTRIC COMPANY, RESPONDENTS (AES NEWENERGY, INC.; ALLIANT ENERGY CORPORATION; ASSOCIATION OF ILLINOIS ELECTRIC COOPERATIVES; BLACKHAWK ENERGY SERVICES, L.L.C.; ENRON ENERGY SERVICES, INC.; ILLINOIS INDUSTRIAL ENERGY CONSUMERS; METROPOLITAN CHICAGO HEALTHCARE COUNCIL; NICOR ENERGY, L.L.C.; PEOPLES ENERGY SERVICE CORPORATION; THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS; AND UNICOM ENERGY, INC., INTERVENORS).

Petition for review of order of Illinois Commerce Commission. ICC No. 00--0494

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Justice Geiger

PUBLISHED

 The petitioner, Commonwealth Edison Company (ComEd), appeals directly to this court from an order of the respondent, Illinois Commerce Commission (the Commission). The Commission's order provided that alternative retail electric suppliers who utilize the single billing option provided under section 16--118(b) of the Public Utilities Act (the Act) (220 ILCS 5/16--118(b) (West 2000)) are not required to bill their electric customers for past-due amounts that the customers may owe ComEd for previously supplied "bundled" service. The order also provided that alternative retail electric suppliers do not have to apply payments that they receive from their customers to past-due amounts that the customers may owe ComEd for previously supplied "bundled" service. On appeal, ComEd argues that the Commission's order misinterprets the statutory requirements of section 16--118(b) of the Act. We affirm.

This appeal arises under Article XVI of the Act, titled the Electric Service Customer Choice and Rate Relief Law of 1997 (220 ILCS 5/16--101 et seq. (West 2000)). The purpose of this article was to introduce competition into the Illinois electricity market. 220 ILCS 5/16--101A(b) (West 2000). A brief background discussion of Article XVI is important to understand the issues presented in the instant appeal.

Under the traditional model of the retail electricity market, a retail customer purchases several different services from its local electric utility as a single "bundled" service. Bundled service includes the electricity itself, as well as all services related to the distribution and delivery of the electricity. However, under the new Article XVI, an eligible retail customer may choose either to continue purchasing bundled service from its local electric utility, or to purchase electricity as a separate "unbundled" service from three new types of suppliers. Unbundled service is available for purchase from (1) alternative retail electric suppliers, which are nonutilities licensed to sell retail electricity; (2) an Illinois electric utility other than the customer's local utility; or (3) the customer's local electric utility. Any supplier other than the customer's local electric utility is known as a "retail electric supplier" (RES). However, even if a retail customer chooses to purchase its electricity on an unbundled basis from an RES, the local electric utility continues to supply that customer's delivery service.

Article XVI also permits an RES to elect to issue a single bill to its electric customers that combines the charges for the RES's electricity and the local electric utility's delivery charges. 220 ILCS 5/16--118(b) (West 2000). This billing procedure is known as the "single billing option" (SBO). Section 16--118(b) of the Act outlines the operation of the SBO as follows:

"An electric utility shall file a tariff pursuant to Article IX of the Act that would allow [RESs] to issue single bills to the retail customers for both the services provided by such [RES] and the delivery services provided by the electric utility to such customers. The tariff filed pursuant to this subsection shall (i) require partial payments made by retail customers to be credited first to the electric utility's tariffed services, (ii) impose commercially reasonable terms with respect to credit and collection, including requests for deposits, (iii) retain the electric utility's right to disconnect the retail customers, if it does not receive payment for its tariffed services, in the same manner that it would be permitted to if it had billed for the services itself, and (iv) require the [RES] that elects the billing option provided by this tariff to include on each bill to retail customers an identification of the electric utility providing the delivery services and a listing of the charges applicable to such services." 220 ILCS 5/16--118(b) (West 2000).

Pursuant to this statutory requirement, ComEd filed a delivery services tariff with the Commission, detailing its intended charges for the delivery of electricity supplied by RESs. After some modification and litigation, these tariffs were approved by the Commission.

On July 11, 2000, the Commission initiated the instant proceeding against ComEd and other electric utilities. The purpose of the proceeding was to investigate whether the delivery services tariffs were unjust, unreasonable, discriminatory, or preferential due to a lack of conformity. Numerous interested parties representing the electric industry and the public interest intervened in the proceeding. Hearings were held in the Commission's Springfield office on December 12, 13, and 14, 2000, at which time the witnesses were available for cross-examination.

At the hearing, as relevant for purposes of this appeal, ComEd argued that the SBO required RESs to bill for past-due amounts that a customer may owe ComEd for bundled services provided by ComEd prior to the time that the RES became the electrical supplier for the customer. ComEd argued that these past-due amounts should be included in the single bill along with ComEd's current charges for the delivery cost of the RES's electricity. ComEd also argued that, in instances where the customer makes only a partial payment of the amount due under the ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.