Welcome to the July 2011 edition of the California Public Utilities Commission's (CPUC) eNewsletter, where you'll find information on public hearings and workshops on AT&T's proposed acquisition of T-Mobile, the launch of a Lighting Action Plan, and more.


CPUC Reaches Out to Seniors with Information on Helpful Programs

The CPUC participated in the Sixth Annual Senior Expo at the Founders Village Senior and Community Center in order to provide helpful information to approximately 600 senior citizens.

Many seniors were interested in saving money on their utility bills with the CARE program and saving money on phone bills with the California LifeLine program. The CPUC also provided information on Medical Baseline, Smart Meters, energy and water conservation, and CalPhoneInfo.

If you would like more information on the CPUC’s programs, or would like a CPUC Outreach Officer to speak at your event, please contact Marzia Zafar in the CPUC’s Business and Community Outreach office via email or at (415) 703-1997.

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CPUC To Hold Public Hearings and Workshops on AT&T's Proposed Acquisition of T-Mobile

The CPUC will hold a series of workshops and Public Participation Hearings regarding AT&T’s proposed acquisition of T-Mobile. The events are as follows:

Public Participation Hearing

  • July 7, 2011, 6 p.m.,
    CPUC Auditorium, 505 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco

Additional Public Participation Hearings will be announced at a later date. Public Participation Hearings are scheduled to provide the public an opportunity to comment on this case.  Comments from the public can help the CPUC reach an informed decision, and consumers are encouraged to attend.  Written comments may be submitted to: CPUC Public Advisor, 505 Van Ness Ave., Room 2103, San Francisco, CA 94102 or via email.

Public Workshops

  • July 8, 2011, 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
    Milton Marks Conference Center (lower level), Hiram W. Johnson State Office Building,
    455 Golden Gate Ave., San Francisco
    TOPIC: Facilities-based competition issues, with a particular focus on special access backhaul, lease and other contract arrangements, spectrum issues, interconnection, roaming, and related issues.
  • July 15, 2011, 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
    Locatelli Center at Santa Clara University,
    500 El Camino Real, Santa Clara
    TOPIC: Innovation issues, including (but not limited to) handsets, distributed antenna systems, broadband, and data transfer.
  • July 22, 2011, 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
    California Department of Transportation Building,
    Conference Room A
    100 S. Main St., Los Angeles
    TOPIC: Customer issues, including (but not limited to) price, service quality, customer service, coverage and coverage disclosures, other consumer disclosures – with small/individual, small business, and large enterprise representatives.

The agendas for the workshops will be available online prior to the date of the workshops.

The CPUC is looking into AT&T’s proposed acquisition of T-Mobile in order to investigate, gather, and analyze information relevant to the proposed merger's effects on the California economy and California consumers.

The CPUC will analyze whether to apply any conditions that would mitigate any California-specific effects of the merger, and whether the CPUC will need to take any further action. In addition, the information the CPUC gathers will create a record that the CPUC can relay to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in conjunction with the FCC’s review of the proposed merger.

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CPUC Orders All California Gas Transmission Operators to Test or Replace Pipeline Not Previously Tested

The CPUC has ordered all California natural gas transmission operators to develop and file for CPUC consideration a Natural Gas Transmission Pipeline Comprehensive Pressure Testing Implementation Plan to achieve the goal of orderly and cost effectively replacing or testing all natural gas transmission pipeline that have not been pressure tested.

The Implementation Plans may include alternatives that demonstrably achieve the same standard of safety but must include a prioritized schedule based on risk assessment and maintaining service reliability, as well as cost estimates with proposed ratemaking. The Implementation Plan will also address retrofitting pipeline to allow for in-line inspection tools and, where appropriate, automated or remote controlled shut off valves.

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CPUC Launches Lighting Action Plan

The CPUC has issued California’s Lighting Action Plan, which implements the lighting goals of the California Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan and focuses on four goals for the lighting sector: policy for market transformation; best practices; end user demand; and research, development, and demonstration.

Lighting is responsible for almost 25 percent of California’s electricity use, but the California Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan says that number can be reduced by as much as 80 percent over the next decade.

The Lighting Action Plan was developed by the “Champions Network,” a sizeable collaborative of nonprofit and for-profit organizations, public utilities, research institutions, and the CPUC. The California Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan - published in 2008 and updated in 2010 by the CPUC - outlines energy goals and efficiency strategies for key market sectors and crosscutting resources like HVAC. It is designed to guide long-term changes in the market by reducing barriers to the adoption of energy efficiency measures until publicly funded intervention is no longer appropriate.

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Visit our Consumer Information Center for more assistance. Consumers with utility complaints can call our Consumer Affairs Branch at 1-800-649-7570.

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Produced by the CPUC's News and Public Information Office and Business and Community Outreach, 415-703-1366, news@cpuc.ca.gov
505 Van Ness Ave., San Francisco, CA 94102.

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