|03/03: House Bill 1413 was signed by Arkansas State Governor Mike Huckabee in order to allow the state’s electric power producers to form consolidated authorities to manage power generating facilities.
02/03: House Bill 1114 was signed by Arkansas State Governor Mike Huckabee in order to repeal earlier enacted deregulation legislation. The Arkansas General Assembly passed Act 204 and determined that it was in the public’s best interest to continue regulating electric utility rates for the foreseeable future.
1/02: On December 20, 2001 the Arkansas Public Service Commission (PSC) submitted a report to the General Assembly regarding the development of a competitive electric market and possible impact on consumers. The PSC stated that based on information submitted in Docket No. 00-190-U (the docket for information related to the PSC's deregulation progress reports to the General Assembly), and the status of activities at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, it did not believe that continued movement towards retail competition in Arkansas is in the public interest. The PSC also recommended that the members of the General Assembly "consider and subsequently implement one of two viable statutory modification options during the 2003 session. The first option would be the complete suspension of the current statute for a considerable period of time, perhaps going out to 2010 or 2012. The second option would be a repeal of the laws related to retail open access."
11/01: The PSC issued an order that postponed the October 18, 2001, scheduled hearing regarding delaying the implementation of retail competition in Arkansas. The hearing is now scheduled for November 1, 2001.
8/01: Responding to the requirments of Act 324, which delays implementation of retail open access until October 2003, but allows the PSC to further delay open access until no later than October 2005, the PSC issued a request for utilities to provide an analysis of prices customers may pay for electric generation service under open access as compared to continued regulation and to provide information needed to evaluate the readiness of both the retail and the wholesale markets for implementation of retail open access. A public hearing is set for October 18, 2001 to consider these issues.
11/00: The Public Service Commission issued the "Report on Electric Restructuring to the Arkansas General Assembly" on November 28, 2000. The PSC recommended the date for deregulation be extended from the original timeframe in the restructuring legislation of January 1, 2002, through June 30, 2003, to October 1, 2003, through October 1, 2005. The PSC will present the report and recommendations to the Joint Insurance and Commerce Committees of the General Assembly on November 30, 2000. The extension will allow more time for the wholesale market to develop and the new federally-regulated transmission organizations to develop and become operational.
10/00: The Arkansas Public Service Commission (PSC) opened a docket to study the California electric power market. The PSC wants to ensure that the power supply problems and price spikes that occurred in California in the summer of 2000 do not occur in Arkansas when restructuring begins in 2002. The State's utilities have suggested delaying the start for competition until October 1, 2003, or October 1, 2005 at the latest. Current legislation requires the retail market to open by June 30, 2003 at the latest. The PSC, utilities and Attorney General's office all agree that the original timetable is unlikely, but disagree on when competition will begin in the State. The PSC is to present its recommendation to the legislature in mid-November 2000.
8/00: In an effort to deregulate by 2002, the PSC is asking utilities to examine whether or not they have market power. Once a utility provides an analysis, the PSC will issue an order determining if, in fact, that utility does have market power. If it is deemed that the utility does have market power, it must submit a mitigation plan, followed by a public hearing and a final PSC order to eliminate that market power.
12/99: The PSC issued rules for Rules for Electric Affiliates and for Energy Provider licensing.
12/99: The PSC will issue a series of reports to facilitate implementation of retail competition. Reports are due on: tax issues and the financial impact on local governments; progress reports on competition and its impact on the price(s) of electricity; and standards of conduct for electric service providers.
5/98: The PSC concluded hearings on when and how to open the electric market to retail competition. Entergy and two other utilities agreed competition should not begin before 1/1/02, when the neighboring States of Oklahoma and Texas expect to open their markets.
12/97: The PSC decided to conduct public hearings in 1998 to address restructuring issues. Four dockets were established to investigate the specific issues. A report with recommendations is due to the General Assembly by October 1998.