MRC Continues Task Force Hiatus

The Markets and Reliability Committee voted Thursday to continue the hiatus of the Transmission Replacement Process Senior Task Force.

Stakeholders agreed to extend the task force’s hiatus for three months, pending action by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which currently lacks a quorum.

The task force examines guidelines and criteria for reviewing aging infrastructure and end-of-life projects in the regional planning.

In September of 2016, the MRC voted to suspend part of the task force’s activities after the FERC issued an Order to Show Cause (Docket EL16-71), establishing a Section 206 proceeding. The order was designed to determine whether the PJM transmission owners are complying with their Order 890 local transmission planning obligations, specifically with supplemental projects.

In Section 206 proceedings, the FERC does not have a hard deadline by which to respond. In September, the MRC approved language that would revive the task force at the earlier of FERC action in the Show Cause Order or in March of 2017. Since the staff at the FERC does not have the authority to act on Section 206 filings while the FERC does not have a quorum, PJM asked the MRC for guidance.

 Separately, PJM presented an update on fuel cost policy process and hourly offers. PJM worked with stakeholders to develop its fuel cost policy proposal to be  ready to implement as soon as possible, once FERC approved the compliance filing.  Recently, the FERC ruled on hourly offers, accepting a significant portion of what PJM filed, with addition modification to some items.

In other action, stakeholders deferred until March to vote on a PJM solution for FERC Order 825, shortage pricing. PJM suggested  that adding a small step to the demand curve will create better price signals prior to when synchronized reserves are less than the largest contingency, especially in transient circumstances. The delay will allow participants more time to review a recently added sensitivity analysis.

PJM updated stakeholders on the development of pro-forma pseudo-tie agreements (and related tariff and operating agreement revisions), which would align PJM’s language with the North American Reliability Council and the FERC.

Stakeholders narrowly rejected a proposed problem statement and issue charge regarding procurement of replacement capacity in incremental auctions. The proposed language would have added discussions on the effects of offers and buy-backs in the capacity market to the work of the Incremental Auction Senior Task Force. Stakeholders earlier defeated a proposal to postpone the vote to allow further discussion.

The committee endorsed:

 Other first reads: