18 CFR § 154.501 - Refunds.

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§ 154.501 Refunds.

(a) Refund Obligation.

(1) Any natural gas company that collects rates or charges pursuant to this chapter must refund that portion of any increased rates or charges either found by the Commission not to be justified, or approved for refund by the Commission as part of a settlement, together with interest as required in paragraph (d) of this section. The refund plus interest must be distributed as specified in the Commission order requiring or approving the refund, or if no date is specified, within 60 days of a final order. For purposes of this paragraph, a final order is an order no longer subject to rehearing. The pipeline is not required to make any refund until it has collected the refundable money through its rates.

(2) Any natural gas company must refund to its jurisdictional customers the jurisdictional portion of any refund it receives which is required by prior Commission order to be flowed through to its jurisdictional customers or represents the refund of an amount previously included in a filing under § 154.403 and charged and collected from jurisdictional customers within thirty days of receipt or other time period established by the Commission or as established in the pipeline's tariff.

(b) Costs of Refunding. Any natural gas company required to make refunds pursuant to this section must bear all costs of such refunding.

(c) Supplier Refunds. The jurisdictional portion of supplier refunds (including interest received), applicable to periods in which a purchased gas adjustment clause was in effect, must be flowed through to the natural gas company's jurisdictional gas sales customers during that period with interest as computed in paragraph (d) of this section.

(d) Interest on Refunds. Interest on the refund balance must be computed from the date of collection from the customer until the date refunds are made as follows:

(1) At an average prime rate for each calendar quarter on all excessive rates or charges held (including all interest applicable to such rates and charges) on or after October 1, 1979. The applicable average prime rate for each calendar quarter must be the arithmetic mean, to the nearest one-hundredth of one percent, of the prime rate values published in the Federal Reserve Bulletin, or in the Federal Reserve's “Selected Interest Rates” (Statistical Release G, 13), for the fourth, third, and second months preceding the first month of the calendar quarter.

(2) The interest required to be paid under paragraph (d)(1) of this section must be compounded quarterly.

(3) The refund balance must be either:

(i) The revenues resulting from the collection of the portion of any increased rates or charges found by the Commission not to be justified; or

(ii) An amount agreed upon in a settlement approved by the Commission; or

(iii) The jurisdictional portion of a refund the natural gas company receives.

(e) Unless otherwise provided by the order, settlement or tariff provision requiring the refund, the natural gas company must file a report of refunds, within 30 days of the date the refund was made, which complies with § 154.502 and includes the following:

(1) Workpapers and a narrative sufficient to show how the refunds for jurisdictional services were calculated;

(2) Workpapers and a narrative sufficient to determine the origin of the refund, including step-by-step calculations showing the derivation of the refund amount described in paragraph (d)(3) of this section, if necessary;

(3) References to any publicly available sources which confirm the rates, quantities, or costs, which are used to calculate the refund balance or which confirm the refund amount itself. If the rate, quantity, cost or refund does not directly tie to the source, a workpaper must be included to show the reconciliation between the rate, quantity, cost, or refund in the natural gas company's report and the corresponding rate, quantity, cost or refund in the source document;

(4) Workpapers showing the calculation of interest on a monthly basis, including how the carrying charges were compounded quarterly;

(5) Workpapers and a narrative explaining how the refund was allocated to each jurisdictional customer. Where the numbers used to support the allocation are publicly available, a reference to the source must be included. Where the allocation methodology has been approved previously, a reference to the order or tariff provision approving the allocation methodology must be included.

(6) A letter of transmittal containing:

(i) A list of the material enclosed;

(ii) The name and telephone number of a company official who can answer questions regarding the filing;

(iii) A statement of the date the refund was disbursed;

(iv) A reference to the authority by which the refund is made, including the specific subpart of these regulations, an order of the Commission, a provision of the company's tariff, or any other appropriate authority. If a Commission order is referenced, include the citation to the FERC Reports, the date of issuance, and the docket number;

(v) Any requests for waiver. Requests must include a reference to the specific section of the statute, regulations, or the company's tariff from which waiver is sought, and a justification for the waiver.

(7) A certification of service to all affected customers and interested state commissions.

(f) Each report filed under paragraph (e) of this section must be posted no later than the date of filing. Each report must be posted to all recipients of a share of the refund and all state commissions whose jurisdiction includes the location of any recipient of a refund share that have made a standing request for such full report.

(g) Recipients of refunds and state commissions that have not made a standing request for such full report shall receive an abbreviated report consisting of the items listed in § 154.501 (e)(5) and (e)(6).

[Order 582, 60 FR 52996, Oct. 11, 1995, as amended by Order 582-A, 61 FR 9629, Mar. 11, 1996]