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COVID-19 FORUM
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PSC Data Request from Utilities 2 M. Heyroth To all Wisconsin water, electric, and gas utilities: On March 24, 2020, in docket 5-AF-105, the Commission authorized all electric, gas, steam, and water public utilities to defer expenditures resulting from compliance with orders by the Commission in docket 5-UI-120 and as otherwise required to ensure provision of safe, reliable, and affordable access to utility services during the declared public health emergency for COVID-19 (PSC REF#: 386353). On May 14, 2020, after receiving comments from utilities, the Commission defined the COVID-19-related expenses, foregone revenue, and carrying costs that are eligible for deferral and ordered utilities to report on these costs (PSC REF#: 389500). The Commission also noted that accurate documentation and reporting will be essential as utilities file future rate applications seeking recovery of deferred balances. As such, they directed the following: • Class A and B utilities will provide total deferral reporting by FERC or USOA account on a monthly basis; • Class C and D utilities will provide such reporting on a quarterly basis;• The first report for all utilities is due June 14, 2020.The Commission also recognized that reporting places further demands on utilities’ resources and time. In order to assist utilities in reporting of COVID-19-related costs, Commission staff developed the following online COVID-19 Utility Reporting Survey that provides a standardized method of reporting expenses by Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) or Uniform System of Accounts (USOA) accounts. Utilities satisfy the Commission’s reporting requirement of docket 5-AF-105 by completing the survey. All utilities should complete the survey, even if they are not reporting any COVID-19-related expenses. • To access the survey, click the link below:https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/COVID19UtilitySurveyNote: If you have data entry problems, please click here for a list of supported browsers. Questions about the Survey and how to report COVID-19 costs can be addressed directly to:• Water Utilities: Kathy Butzlaff, kathy.butzlaff@wisconsin.gov • Electric and Gas Utilities: Debra Prost, debra.probst@wisconsin.gov For announcements and resources related to COVID-19, please visit the Commission’s Frequently Asked Questions for Utilities webpage. As a reminder, the best way to receive timely correspondence from the Commission is to ensure the utility’s official name and contact information is up-to-date in the Commission’s Universal Name File. To check or change your utility’s information, go to http://apps.psc.wi.gov/vs2015/UNFAddressRequest/default.aspx. Only utility staff can update the address. If you do not know your utility’s log-in ID or password, please contact the Commission’s Records Management Unit at PSCRecordsMail@wisconsin.gov. Martin Day, Administrator Division of Energy Regulation and AnalysisMartin.Day@wisconsin.gov 608-267-9813 Denise Schmidt, AdministratorDivision of Water Utility Regulation and AnalysisDenise.Schmidt@wisconsin.gov608-800-2941
by A. Gebeau
Monday, June 8, 2020
WI DNR COVID-19 Response, Questions and Guidance for Public Water Systems 2 M. Heyroth MAY 6, 2020 Operator Certification Exams CANCELLEDThe exams previously scheduled on May 6, 2020 have been cancelled, for ch. NR 114, Wis. Adm. Code, drinking water, wastewater, septage, landfill and incineration as well as ch. NR 146, Wis. Adm. Code, licensed well drillers and pump installers. Credit will be issued to applications that have been processed and non-processed checks will be returned. Exams have been scheduled to be held statewide on August 5, 2020, in 6 locations and you will need to reapply for that exam period and location.
by M. Heyroth
Monday, April 6, 2020
PSC's FAQ on COVID-19 1 M. Heyroth Here is more info from the PSC relating to child care help for essential staff.   Providing child care to the essential workforce is critical to flattening the curve of COVID-19 in Wisconsin. To meet this need, Governor Evers created the Child Care for Essential Workers Taskforce. Led by the Department of Children and Families (DCF), the taskforce is working with the Early Childhood Association (WECA) and Supporting Families Together Association (SFTA) to connect essential workforce families in need of child care with locally available child care resources.   DCF is excited to launch two new tools to help connect essential workforce families to local, safe child care. Healthcare workers and essential employees are now able to submit a request for care through the department’s updated Child Care Finder or proactively view up-to-date availability across the state using the department’s new child care map.   Please see below resources for more information regarding the Child Care for Essential Workers Taskforce and relevant information for parents. More information for providers, essential workers and families can be found on the DCF COVID-19 Child Care webpage.   For any questions regarding this effort, please contact dcfmbcovid19@wisconsin.gov.   Child care for essential workers   Tips for parents and child care    
by M. Heyroth
Monday, March 30, 2020
Building Closures/Reopening 1 M. Heyroth The link below includes the resources the International Facility Managers Association has been putting out, including archived webinars. https://www.ifma.org/know-base/coronavirus-preparedness-resource-center
by A. Gebeau
Thursday, May 28, 2020
Flushing video 0 A. Gebeau Way to go Louisville Water for a video on how to flushing building plumbing!
by A. Gebeau
Monday, May 18, 2020
Renewal and Continuing Education Requirements for Certified Operators 1 M. Heyroth From DNR 5/28/2020Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the DNR is currently evaluating the ability to safely provide exams to drinking water, wastewater, septage, and landfill operators, as well as well drillers and pump installers. It is the DNR’s intent to administer exams in late summer or fall, however the manner in which this will be done is still uncertain and the DNR is evaluating a variety of possibilities to ensure the health and safety of our customers. As a result, applications for these exams will not be available until the DNR finalizes plans for providing exams. More detailed information will be shared in the coming weeks as it becomes available.
by A. Gebeau
Thursday, May 28, 2020
PSC Ruling on requiring budget payment plans 0 M. Heyroth PSC Commissioners rule not all utilities are required to offer customers a budget plan   At its April 30 meeting, the Public Service Commissionruledthat "Not all utilities are required to offer a budget payment plan, regardless of customer class, to all customers. The administrative code and tariff requirements related to budget payment plans remain in effect and unchanged."   The Wisconsin Utilities Association, Municipal Electric Utilities of Wisconsin, WPPI Energy and several individual utilities including La Crosse Water Utility, City of Appleton Water Utility and Green Bay Water Utility all opposed expanding budget billing requirements beyond residential electric and gas customers. "They explained that complying with such a requirement would require costly changes to billing systems, be time-intensive due to the difficulty of estimating bills for certain customer classes, and would potentially result in cash flow difficulties for the utilities," according tothe memo prepared by staff for the meeting.   Water utilities may, but are not required to offer budget billing to customers. Commenters pointed out that for those not currently offering this option, setting up systems to offer budget payment plans would "entail cost and complexity." The water utilities also told the commission that they bill quarterly, which also allows customers some flexibility.  
by M. Heyroth
Friday, May 8, 2020
Child Care For Essential Workforce 0 A. Gebeau Additional resources to locate child care for essential workforce.  
by A. Gebeau
Tuesday, April 14, 2020
Diggers Hotline requirement during the Covid-19 Pandemic 0 M. Heyroth Dear senators, Alberta Darling and Senator Daniel Knodl   On behalf of the Germantown Water utility I would like to bring to your attention State Statute 182.0175 Titled “Damage to Transmission Facilities”. During this challenging time of the Covid-19 Pandemic, utilities are still required to locate their respective infrastructure when a Diggers Hotline ticket is received. The member or owners have a 3 day minimum time frame to provide this locating service prior to the start date and time indicated on the Hotline ticket for underground work to begin.   The challenge now has rising because of Covid-19 sickness, self-quarantine, social distancing and Utility staff helping out in other areas of public works/voting, our staff levels and being challenged to meet this 3 day requirement. I am making an appeal through your offices to bring forward to the Governor the ability to length the required time from 3 days to 6 days and length the time for one hour relocates to a four hour requirement.  Still keeping the emergency one hour requirement intact until the Governor’s office lifts the non-essential business closures.     I look forward to hearing from you. Thanks Paul   Rep.Knodl@legis.wisconsin.gov; Sen.Darling@legis.wisconsin.gov   Trevor.Ford@legis.wisconsin.gov; Mark.Austinson@legis.wisconsin.gov; Bob.Delaporte@legis.wisconsin.gov; Rachel.Keith@legis.wisconsin.gov; RJ.Lambert@legis.wisconsin.gov; Eileen.O'Neill@legis.wisconsin.gov; Jerry.Ponio@legis.wisconsin.gov; Abby.Trawicki@legis.wisconsin.gov
by M. Heyroth
Monday, April 6, 2020
AWWA National Resources 4 M. Heyroth Be a Trusted Source: How to Handle Communication Challenges During COVID-19 The coronavirus pandemic has created unique communication challenges for water professionals.  Watch our complimentary webinar recording for a discussion on the risk communication best practices that can position you as a reassuring voice for employees, leadership and customers navigating this evolving landscape.  https://www.gotostage.com/channel/16921d7cb152490e82f25f5163c66f15/recording/62873b1374a04135964d26b934246ce4/watch?utm_source=events&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=w200403&source_2=day%20of
by M. Heyroth
Wednesday, April 8, 2020
Resource Request to State 4 A. Gebeau Attached is information from Wendy Anderson with DNR on DNR actions during the Covid-19 response and recommendations for utilities.
by A. Gebeau
Monday, March 30, 2020
Best Practices 9 M. Bednarski Below is further information on Building flushing from AWWA.  The WRF report is attached for your use and the link will take you to more information.   https://www.awwa.org/Resources-Tools/Resource-Topics/Coronavirus#10681543-shutoffs-and-return-to-service-guidance
by A. Gebeau
Wednesday, April 15, 2020
Impacts on water sales and revenues 2 C. DeMaster Thank you for sharing. I'm glad you're not seeing a noticeable drop in pumpage, and the use of more ACH auto withdrawals and online payments seems like a good thing. Keep us posted if anything changes.
by C. DeMaster
Wednesday, March 25, 2020
TRACK COSTS 2 A. Gebeau FYI See below for a link to follow PSC Emergency Order #11   We understand that specific questions will come up regarding how to properly implement the Emergency Order. Please subscribe to docket 5-UI-120 using the Electronic Records Filing (ERF) system. The Order in this docket will provide further implementation instructions and direction from the Commission.
by M. Heyroth
Tuesday, March 24, 2020
Business Continuity Plan and Pandemic Article 2 A. Gebeau For the purpose of sharing:The City of Stevens Point started a rotation for utility staff today. Briefly, it is a week on - week off type of rotation to keep contact to a minimum and minimize any potential spread of COVID-19. Happy to discuss with anyone interested. 715-345-5266. This applies to operators mostly, our office staff has spread out in our building due to the fact that we have the availabe space.Joel
by J. Lemke
Monday, March 23, 2020
WIWARN Agreements. "Utilities Helping Utilities" 3 M. Heyroth Information Request from IOWARN (John Lins) * It appears the lack of travel has caused ethanol plants to close or reduce production. * Des Moines Water Works normally uses 7 tankers of CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) per month * Supplier says they can only provide 3-4 and it will get scarcer the longer this goes on. * We are seeking an alternate source of CO2 in the country and that is from wells vs ethanol. * Who knows of a CO2 source that is not an ethanol plan?Kevin M. Morley, PhDAmerican Water Works AssociationManager, Federal Relations1300 Eye Street, NW Suite 701WWashington, DC 20005D: 202-326-6124
by M. Heyroth
Friday, March 27, 2020
Emergency Orders # 11 & #12- PSC Administrative Rules Suspensions 2 M. Heyroth Here are some safer at home FAQ's See attached file.
by M. Heyroth
Wednesday, March 25, 2020
WIAWWA Statement on COVID-19 1 M. Heyroth Anyone needing to utilize WARN can certainly reach out to me for help!Joel LemkeDirectorStevens Point Public Utilitiesjlemke@stevenspoint.com715-345-5266
by J. Lemke
Monday, March 23, 2020
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