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Central Maine Power Company Proposed Electric Vehicle Pilot Project

2013 WL 4433468 (2013)

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Central Maine Power Company Proposed Electric Vehicle Pilot Project

Maine Public Utilities Commission

2013 WL 4433468 (2013)

Facts

The Maine Public Utilities Commission (the commission) considered a stipulation agreed to by Central Maine Power Company (Central Maine) (plaintiff), two other utility companies, and three environmental groups. The Maine Power Reliability Program Stipulation (the stipulation) contained a provision that required Central Maine to propose three electric vehicle (EV) pilot projects. The parties agreed that pilot project 1 had been successfully implemented. Pilot project 2 had been divided into pilot project 2-A and pilot project 2-B. Pilot project 2-B called for ratepayer funds to spend up to $25,000 on a third-party administrator for the program and $100,000 for incentive grants. Central Maine was to pay for the ratepayer-funded portions of pilot project 2-B to start, but Central Maine was permitted to defer such costs for future recovery from ratepayers (i.e., utility customers). The stipulation also provided that the parties would form a stakeholder group to develop pilot project 3. The Office of the Public Advocate, which represented the interests of ratepayers, submitted comments to the commission regarding the stipulation. The Office of the Public Advocate neither supported nor opposed the stipulation. It merely called attention to the use of ratepayer funds to pay for pilot project 2-B and the failure to consider the use of EVs as a nontransmission alternative, charging in off-hours and discharging electricity back to the grid during periods of high demand. Ultimately, the Office of the Public Advocate opined that pilot program 2-B provided little benefit to ratepayers. The commission approved the stipulation and entered an order regarding Central Maine’s proposed pilot programs.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning

Dissent (Vannoy, J.)

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