18 CFR 35.25 - Construction work in progress.
(a)Applicability. This section applies to any rate schedule filed under this part by any public utility as defined in subsection 201(e) of the Federal Power Act.
(b)Definitions. For purposes of this section:
(1)Constuction work in progress or CWIP means any expenditure for public utility plant in process of construction that is properly included in Accounts 107 (construction work in progress) and 120.1 (nuclear fuel in process of refinement, conversion, enrichment, and fabrication) of part 101 of this chapter, the Uniform System of Accounts Prescribed for Public Utilities and Licensees Subject to the Provisions of the Federal Power Act (Major and Nonmajor), that would otherwise be eligible for allowance for funds used during construction (AFUDC) treatment.
(2)Double whammy means a situation which may arise when a wholesale electric rate customer embarks upon its own or participates in a construction program to supply itself with all or a portion of its future power needs, thereby reducing its future dependence on the CWIP of the rate applicant, but is simultaneously forced to pay to the CWIP public utility rate applicant the CWIP portion of the wholesale rates that reflects existing levels of service or a different anticipated service level.
(3)Fuel conversion facility means any addition to public utility plant that enables a natural gas-burning plant to convert to the use of other fuels, or that enables an oil-burning plant to convert to the use of other fuels, other than natural gas. Such facilities include those that alter internal plant workings, such as oil or coal burners, soot blowers, bottom ash removal systems and concomitant air pollution control facilities, and any facility needed for receiving and storing the fuel to which the plant is being converted, which facility would not be necessary if the plant continued to burn gas or oil.
(4)Pollution control facility means an identifiable structure or portions of a structure that is designed to reduce the amount of pollution produced by the power plant, but does not include any facility that reduces pollution by substituting a different method of generation or that generates the additional power necessitated by the operation of a pollution control facility.
(c)General rule. For purposes of any initial rate schedule or any rate schedule change filed under § 35.12 or § 35.13 of this part, a public utility may include in its rate base any costs of construction work in progress (CWIP), including allowance for funds used during construction (AFUDC), as provided in this section.
(1)Pollution control facilities -
(i)General rule. Any CWIP for pollution control facilities allocable to electric power sales for resale may be included in the rate base of the public utility.
(ii)Qualification as a pollution control facility. In determining whether a facility is a pollution control facility for purposes of this section, the Commission will consider:
(A) Whether such facility is the type facility described in the Internal Revenue Service laws, 26 U.S.C. 169(d)(1), as follows:
“A new identifiable treatment facility which is used * * * to abate or control water or atmospheric pollution or contamination by removing, altering, disposing, storing, or preventing the creation or emission of pollutants, contaminants, wastes or heat”;
(B) Whether such facility has been certified by a local, state, or federal agency as being in conformity with, or required by, a program of pollution control;
(C) Other evidence showing that such facilities are for pollution control.
(2)Fuel conversion facilities. Any CWIP for fuel conversion facilities allocable to electric power sales for resale may be included in the rate base of the public utility.
(3)Non-pollution control of fuel conversion (non-PC/FC) CWIP. No more than 50 percent of any CWIP allocable to electric power sales for resale not otherwise included in rate base under paragraphs (c) (1) and (2) of this section, may be included in the rate base of the public utility.
(4)Forward looking allocation ratios. Every test period CWIP project requested for wholesale rate base treatment pursuant to § 35.26(c)(1), (2), and (3) of this part will be allocated to the customer classes on the basis of forward looking allocation ratios reflecting the anticipated average annual use the wholesale customers will make of the system over the estimated service life of the project. Supporting documentation, as required by §§ 35.12 and 35.13 of this part, must be in sufficient detail to permit examination and verification of the forward looking allocation ratio's recognition of each wholesale customer's plans, if any, for future alternative or supplementary power supplies. For the purpose of preventing anticompetitive effects, including CWIP-induced price squeeze and double whammy, sufficient recognition of such plans may require the public utility applicant to provide for separate customer groups or provide for a rate design incorporating selected CWIP project credits.
(d)Effective date. If a public utility proposes in its filed rates to include CWIP in rate base under this section, that portion of the rate related to CWIP is collectible at the time the general rates become effective pursuant to Commission order, whether or not subject to refund, except as provided in paragraph (g) of this section.
(e)Discontinuance of AFUDC. On the date that any proposed rate that includes CWIP in rate base becomes effective, a public utility that has included CWIP in rate base must discontinue the capitalization of any AFUDC related to those amounts of CWIP is rate base.
(f)Accounting procedures. When a public utility files to include CWIP in its rate base pursuant to this section, it must propose accounting procedures in that rate schedule filing that:
(1) Ensure that wholesale customers will not be charged for both capitalized AFUDC and corresponding amounts of CWIP proposed to be included in rate base; and
(2) Ensure that wholesale customers will not be charged for any corresponding AFUDC capitalized as a result of different accounting or ratemaking treatments accorded CWIP by state or local regulatory authorities.
(g)Anticompetitive procedures -
(1)Filing requirements. In order to facilitate Commission review of the anticompetitive effects of applications for CWIP pursuant to § 35.26(c)(3), a public utility applying for rates based upon inclusion of such CWIP in rate base must include the following information in its filing:
(i) The percentage of the proposed increase in the jurisdictional rate level attributable to non-pollution control/fuel conversion CWIP and the percentage of non-pollution control/fuel conversion CWIP supporting the proposed rate level;
(ii) The percentage of non-pollution control/fuel conversion CWIP permitted by the state or local commission supporting the current retail rates of the public utility against which the relevant wholesale customers compete; and
(iii) Individual earned rate of return analyses of each of the competing retail rates developed on a basis fully consistent with the wholesale cost of service for the same test period if the requested percentage of wholesale non-pollution control/fuel conversion CWIP exceeds that permitted by the relevant state or local authority to support the currently competing retail rates.
(i) If an intervenor in its initial pleading alleges that a price squeeze will occur as a direct result of the public utility's request for CWIP pursuant to § 35.26(c)(3), makes a showing that it is likely to incur harm if such CWIP is allowed subject to refund, and makes a showing of how the harm to the intervenor would be mitigated or eliminated by the types of preliminary relief requested, the Commission will consider preliminary relief at the suspension stage of the case pursuant to paragraph (g)(4) of this section. In determining whether to grant preliminary relief, the Commission will balance the following public interest considerations:
(A) The harm to the intervenor if it is not granted preliminary relief from the requested CWIP;
(B) The harm to the public utility if, during the interim period of preliminary relief, the public utility is required to recover its financing charges later through AFUDC rather than immediately through CWIP; and
(C) Mitigating bias against investment in new plants, ensuring accurate price signals, and fostering rate stability.
(ii) Whether or not preliminary relief is granted at the suspension stage will not preclude consideration of further interim or final remedies later in the proceedings, if warranted.
(3) If the Commission makes a final determination that a price squeeze due solely to allowance of a lower percentage of non-pollution control/fuel conversion CWIP in the public utility's retail rate base than allowed by this Commission, the Commission will consider an adjustment to non-pollution control/fuel conversion CWIP in order to eliminate or mitigate the price squeeze.
(4) If an intervenor meets the requirements of paragraph (g)(2) of this section, the Commission, depending on the type of showing made including the likelihood, immediacy, and severity of any anticompetitive harm, may:
(i) Suspend the entire rate increase or all or a portion of the non-pollution control/fuel conversion CWIP component for up to five months;
(ii) Allow all or a portion of the non-pollution control/fuel conversion CWIP only prospectively from the issuance of the Commission's final order on rehearing on the matter; or
(iii) Take such other action as is proper under the circumstances.