The Energy Regulatory Commission has set for jurisdictional hearing, the application of the Central Negros Electric Cooperative to be allowed to refund, collect over and under recoveries, on April 26, 2012 at the ERC hearing room at the Pacific Center Building in Pasig City.
CENECO has filed an application for approval of over/under recoveries in the implementation of automatic cost adjustments and true-up mechanisms and corresponding confirmation process under ERC Resolution No. 16, Series of 2009, as amended by Resolution No. 21, Series of 2010 on March 26.
In his order dated March 28, 2012, ERC executive director lll Francis Saturnino, directed CENECO to publish the notice of hearing at its own expense once in a newspaper of general circulation and to inform the consumers within its franchise area of the filing of the application and the schedule of the hearing.
He also directed CENECO to furnish all those making requests copies of the application and its attachments.
Saturnino said CENECO must submit to ERC its written compliance with the jurisdictional requirements attached, during the date of the initial hearing and pre-trial conference.
CENECO and all interested parties are also directed to submit at least five days before the date of initial hearing and pre-trial conference, their respective pre-trial briefs, he said.
Failure of CENECO to submit the required pre-trial brief and judicial affidavits of the witnesses within the prescribed period will be a ground for cancellation of the scheduled hearing, and resetting will be six months later, Saturnino said.
CENECO must also be prepared to make an expository presentation of its application, he added.
Meanwhile, Elinore Cabanilla of the Social Action Center yesterday said the holding of the hearing in Manila has been done several times and there is lack of transparency since they did not invite any oppositor or intervenor to it.
She said only CENECO has collectibles of P414 million from its consumers. These are under-recoveries from 2004 to 2011, she also said.
CENECO president Arnel Lapore, however, said this is an order of the ERC and they only follow the directive since ERC has jurisdiction over the case.
Usually, initial expository presentation of compliance order is being held in Manila while that of rates increase is held in the affected area, he said.
“In the ERC ruling, we do not have any say, unless there is an oppositor or intervenor who will request that it be held in their area,” he added.
Lapore said they have complied with the jurisdictional requirement of publication required by the ERC.
CENECO has about 136-140,000 consumers within its franchise area, he said.
Councilor Archie Baribae, chairman of the Sanggunian Committee on Energy, said he has received a notice of the hearing and will try to fit it in his schedule.*CGS