The Regulatory Mix, TMI’s daily blog of regulatory activities, is a snapshot of PUC, FCC, legislative, and occasionally court, issues that our regulatory monitoring team uncovers each day. Depending on their significance, some items may be the subject of a TMI Regulatory Bulletin.
The FCC announced it is accepting applications from entities interested in receiving certification to distribute equipment under the National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program (NDBEDP) to qualifying residents in Vermont and Nebraska. Applications will be accepted until May 6, 2014. In 2012, the FCC selected the Vermont Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Inc. (VCDHH) as the NDBEDP certified program for the state of Vermont and the Nebraska Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (NCDHH) as the NDBEDP certified program for Nebraska. However, both entities recently told the FCC they were unable to continue to participate in the NDBEDP and will relinquish their certifications.
The certified program selected for Vermont will be eligible to receive reimbursement for eligible NDBEDP-related costs that it incurs after its selection both for (1) the second year of the pilot program through June 30, 2014, up to the amount of unused funds remaining from the allocation for Vermont, and (2) the third year of the pilot program, July 1, 2014 – June 30, 2015, up to the full funding amount allocated for the state of Vermont. The certified program selected for Nebraska will become eligible to receive the funding only for the third year since NCDHH is not relinquishing its certification until June 30, 2014, the end of the second year of the pilot program. Any public program or private entity may apply to the FCC for certification if it meets the FCC’s qualification requirements.
The Commission has determined that ComEd and Ameren Illinois have made sufficient progress toward deployment of their respective Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) or smart meter systems that there is no need for a Commission investigation into their progress this year.
- According to ComEd’s AMI annual report, it installed or deployed 70,882 smart meters in the Maywood service area during the past year, exceeding its target of 60,000 new meters. These meters are in addition to the original 120,000 smart meters installed earlier as part of a pilot program. Under the current deployment schedule, the company estimates it will install approximately 160,000 smart meters in 2014. The company invested approximately $42.6 million in capital expenditures on the AMI project last year and expects capital expenditures of $82.7 million in 2014.
- The Ameren Illinois AMI annual report notes that the company’s capital expenditures last year totaled $18.1 million, on activities ranging from development of the network, integrated operations center work and preparation for smart meter deployment. The company plans to begin installing electric smart meters in the second quarter of 2014. Capital expenditures on the smart meter deployment are expected to be about $34.5 million in 2014.