Monday, October 22, 2012

FERC Proposed Rulemaking To Reduce Reporting and Filings

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) announced on October 18 three proposed regulatory reform actions to ease the regulatory burdens on the natural gas and oil pipeline industries. The Commission issued three Notices of Proposed Rulemaking that would reduce the pipeline industries' regulatory burden:
  • A proposal to eliminate 145 annual filings made by Natural Gas Act pipelines as a result of a change in the annual charge assessment unit surcharge;
  • A proposal to streamline the processing of rate and other filings by intrastate pipelines performing interstate service under section 311 of the Natural Gas Policy Act and Hinshaw pipelines; and
  • A proposal to eliminate oil pipelines' unnecessary filings, update requirements for service, and update requirements for posting tariff information.
Comments on each proposal are due 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.

FERC staff also issued a report that identifies minor revisions to the Commission's natural gas pipeline regulations that may be appropriate to remove reporting requirements that no longer serve their intended purpose. The report was issued pursuant to the Nov. 8, 2011, Plan for Retrospective Analysis of Existing Rules prepared in response to Executive Order 13579, which requested independent regulatory agencies issue plans for periodic retrospective analysis of their existing regulations. Comments on the FERC staff report are due November 18.

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