AN ACT relative to the system benefits charge.


SPONSORS: Rep. Harrington, Straf. 3


COMMITTEE: Science, Technology and Energy






This bill changes the procedure for increasing the system benefits charge assessed  electric customers and clarifies its purposes.


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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.






In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty One


AN ACT relative to the system benefits charge.


Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:


1 Restructuring Policy Principles; System Benefits Charge. Amend RSA 374-F:3, VI to read as follows:

VI.  Benefits for All Consumers. Restructuring of the electric utility industry should be implemented in a manner that benefits all consumers equitably and does not benefit one customer class to the detriment of another.  Costs should not be shifted unfairly among customers.  A nonbypassable and competitively neutral system benefits charge applied to the use of the distribution system may be used to fund public benefits related to the provision of electricity.  Such benefits, as approved by regulators, may include,[ but not necessarily be limited to,] programs for low-income customers, energy efficiency programs whose main purpose is to reduce the consumption of electricity and not some other form of energy, funding for the electric utility industry's share of commission expenses pursuant to RSA 363-A, support for research and development, and investments in commercialization strategies for new and beneficial technologies.  [Legislative] Prior approval [of] by either the passage of legislation by the New Hampshire general court or authorization by the fiscal committee of the general court shall be required to increase the system benefits charge[.  This requirement of prior approval of the New Hampshire general court shall not apply to the energy efficiency portion of the system benefits charge if the increase is authorized by an order of the commission to implement the 3-year planning periods of the Energy Efficiency Resource Standard framework established by commission Order No. 25,932 dated August 2, 2016, ending in 2020 and 2023, or, if for purposes other than implementing the Energy Efficiency Resource Standard, is authorized by the fiscal committee of the general court]; provided, however, that no less than 20 percent of the portion of the funds collected for energy efficiency shall be expended on low-income energy efficiency programs.  Energy efficiency programs should include the development of relationships with third-party lending institutions to provide opportunities for low-cost financing of energy efficiency measures to leverage available funds to the maximum extent, and shall also include funding for workforce development to minimize waiting periods for low-income energy audits and weatherization.

2  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.