:: John W. Dax
:: William F. McLaughlin


2016-12-15 :: National Grid Ordered to Reimburse Over 1 Million Dollars

In an order issued by the New York Public Service Commission (PSC) on October 17, 2016, National Grid was directed to reimburse an Albany area real estate developer funds wrongly withheld for costs incurred to extend underground electric service into a new residential development.  National Grid was also directed to identify other developers who had been under-reimbursed and to file a plan for making the affected developers whole.  On December 15 National Grid filed a list of some 77 development projects and listed the reimbursements that National Grid owes each. The total amounts to over $1,000,000.00 and National Grid has committed to make the payments within 30 days. The PSC’s order was made in response to a complaint filed by The Dax Law Firm, P.C. on behalf of its client, the builder of Dutch Meadows Subdivision, located in Scotia, New York and commonly known as “Glenwyck Manor.”  Other clients of The Dax Law Firm were also the subject of National Grid’s practices that the PSC found to be in violation of the Public Service Law and PSC regulations. The Dax Law Firm is continuing to examine the list filed by National Grid to ensure it is complete. Also still at issue is whether National Grid should pay interest on the wrongfully withheld funds. The PSC order and the National Grid list of affected developments can be found at PSC Case 15-E-0560

For further information contact John W. Dax at 432-1002 or [email protected]

2016-10-17 :: The Dax Law Firm Prevails on Complaint Against National Grid’s Service Line Extension Practices for Residential Developments

Ruling on a Complaint the firm filed in August of 2015, THE NIGRO GROUP, on October 17, 2016, the New York Public Service Commission issued its Order Granting Relief and Ordering Tariff Changes (Order), in Case 15-E-0560, Complaint of Glenwyck Development, LLC Against Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation d/b/a National Grid Regarding Underground Residential Distribution Provisions Contained in Rule 16 of PSC Tariff No. 220.  The PSC rejected National Grid’s practice of reducing mandatory reimbursements to developers who perform their own trenching based upon the “number of occupants in the trench,” agreeing with us that the practice was contrary to law.  The PSC confirmed that the utility’s obligation is to reimburse residential real estate developers at a rate commensurate with the utility’s “gross cost.”  As a result, the Commission ordered National Grid to revise its practice and to reimburse Glenwyck Development, LLC all of the unreimbursed cost of performing trenching at its Dutch Meadows Subdivision.  National Grid was further ordered to develop a plan to identify and reimburse all other applicants for service affected by the prorating of trenching reimbursement costs.

At issue in the Complaint was National Grid’s practice of “pro-rating” reimbursement rates for developers who choose to perform their own trenching.  In rejecting this practice, the Commission concluded that:

Niagara Mohawk’s attempt to shift these costs to Glenwyck, ostensibly because of the other utilities’ use of the installed trench, is clearly contrary to the requirements of §31(4) and therefore invalid.

The Commission also refused to apply the filed rate doctrine for two separate reasons.  First, because the “rate [was] not at issue” and, second, because the practice “involve[d] the different treatment of similarly situated customers.”  On the first point, the PSC confirmed that PSL §31(4) “requires Niagara Mohawk to provide the first 100 feet of service at no charge.” As a result, “there is no dispute regarding what is owed for what service.”  On the second point, the Commission observed that National Grid’s practice of providing only partial reimbursement for developer trench work when there are multiple utilities in the trench is “the equivalent of charging the applicant for the service and contrary to the law.”  

The decision will likely have further significance because it confirms that a utility’s affirmative obligation is to provide service, rather than facilities, and that this obligation includes providing “the first 100 feet of service at no charge.”

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New York State Court of Appeals Ruling - Unanimous Reversal of New York Public Service Commission Declaratory Ruling in Luyster Creek, LLC v New York State Public Service Commission and Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc.  Click Here to Read Decision No. 68.


Click here to watch Oral Argument in Luyster Creek, LLC v New York State Public Service Commission and Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc., Argument, March 19, 2012

2011-12-15 :: STONY CREEK WIND FARM APPROVED (11-E-0351)

New Wind Farm Will Increase Amount of Renewable Energy in New York.  New York Public Service Commission issues Order Granting Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need to Stony Creek Energy on December 15, 2011.  Click here to read entire Order

2010-09-15 :: HUDSON TRANSMISSION PARTNERS, LLC (Case 08-T-0034)

New York State Public Service Commission issues Order Granting Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need (Order) to Hudson Transmission Partners, LLC on September 15, 2010.  Click here to read entire Order.

2010-09-08 :: HUDSON TRANSMISSION PARTNERS LLC (Case 08-T-0034)

Albany, NY—09/08/10—The New York State Public Service Commission (Commission) today approved the New York portion of an approximately seven mile 345 kV transmission line from New Jersey to midtown Manhattan. Click here to print copy of PSC Press Release COMMISSION APPROVES TRANSMISSION LINE TO NYC.





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