Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) was signed into law by President Obama on February 17, 2009. It is an unprecedented effort to jumpstart our economy, create or save millions of jobs, and put a down payment on addressing long-neglected challenges so our country can thrive in the 21st century. The Act is an extraordinary response to a crisis unlike any since the Great Depression, and includes measures to modernize our nation's infrastructure, enhance energy independence, expand educational opportunities, preserve and improve affordable health care, provide tax relief, and protect those in greatest need.
The Utilities and Transportation Commission (commission) regulatory work focuses on traditional matters of rate-making, including regulatory accounting, cost-recovery, rate-spread and rate-design. In addition, the commission reviews utility integrated-resource plans and conservation programs.
To ensure customer rates are fair, just and reasonable, commission staff capabilities must grow to match the characteristics of the new investment opportunities, or mandates, faced by the utilities.
In response to the U.S Department of Energy's Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), number DE-FOA-0000100, titled Recovery Act - State Electricity Regulators Assistance, the commission sought and was awarded funding for four years to build regulatory staff capability in five programs. The funding supported hiring two new staff members in Regulatory Services and Policy Research, which the commission budget would not have otherwise accommodated.
It also allows existing staff to receive training in new technologies with implications for regulatory practice.
The affected energy technology programs are: