[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 98 (Wednesday, May 21, 2014)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 29075-29077]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-11767]


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DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

18 CFR Parts 35, 154, 341, and 385

[Docket No. RM01-5-001; Order No. 714-A]


Electronic Tariff Filings

AGENCY: Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Energy.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: The Commission is clarifying its regulations to make explicit 
that, consistent with Order No. 714 and its subsequent orders, 
statutory tariff and rate filings must be made electronically, 
according to the Commission's posted requirements for eTariff filings. 
Filings not made in proper electronic format will not become effective 
under the applicable statutes if the Commission fails to act by the 
proposed effective dates in the applicants' pleadings.

DATES: This rule will become effective June 20, 2014.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 

Michael Goldenberg (Legal Information), Office of the General Counsel, 
888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, 202-502-8685, 
michael.goldenberg@ferc.gov, (Legal Issues).
H. Keith Pierce (Technical Information), Office of Energy Market 
Regulation, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, 202-502-8525, 
keith.pierce@ferc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

147 FERC ] 61,115
Before Commissioners: Cheryl A. LaFleur, Acting Chairman; Philip D. 
Moeller, John R. Norris, and Tony Clark.

Final Rule

Issued May 15, 2014

    1. By this instant Final Rule, the Commission is clarifying its 
regulations \1\ to make explicit that, in order for filings to have a 
statutory action date, the filings must be made electronically as 
tariff filings in accordance with the Commission's posted requirements 
and formats (commonly known as ``eTariff''). Filings not made in proper 
format consistent with the Commission's eTariff requirements will not 
become effective by operation of law under the statutes administered by 
the Commission, if the Commission fails to act on the filings within 
the timeframes in the statutes.\2\ These revisions clarify the 
regulations so they reflect the Commission's Order No. 714,\3\ adopting 
regulations requiring electronic filing of tariffs and tariff-related 
materials.
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    \1\ 18 CFR 35.7, 154.4, 341.1, and 385.205.
    \2\ These statutes include the Natural Gas Act (NGA), the 
Federal Power Act (FPA), and the Interstate Commerce Act (ICA).
    \3\ Electronic Tariff Filings, Order No. 714, 73 FR 57515 (Oct. 
3, 2008), FERC Stats. & Regs., Regulations Preambles 2008-2013 ] 
31,276 (2008).
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I. Discussion

    2. Section 4 of the Natural Gas Act (NGA),\4\ section 205 of the 
Federal Power Act (FPA),\5\ and section 6 of the Interstate Commerce 
Act (ICA) \6\ provide that no change shall be made in rates, charges, 
classifications, or services except after prior notice provided to the 
Commission. The statutes further provide that if the Commission fails 
to act on such a filing within the statutorily prescribed notice 
period, the changes in the filing will become effective by operation of 
law.
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    \4\ 15 U.S.C. 717c.
    \5\ 16 U.S.C. 824d.
    \6\ 49 App. U.S.C. 6 (1988).
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    3. These statutory provisions (section 4(c) of the NGA, section 
205(c) of the FPA and section 6(6) of the ICA) also provide that 
filings to revise rates, terms and conditions of service must be filed 
in the form the Commission designates. In Order No. 714, the Commission 
adopted regulations \7\ governing the filing of such changes to rates, 
terms and conditions of service and of other materials related to such 
changes,\8\ for natural gas pipelines, public utilities, and oil 
pipelines governed by these statutes. These regulations require that 
all tariff and tariff-related filings must be made electronically 
according to the requirements and formats for such electronic filing 
listed in the instructions for such electronic filing.\9\ The 
Commission stated that the formats and data elements in these 
requirements ``are required to properly identify the nature of the 
tariff filing. . . .'' \10\ In a subsequent order, the Commission 
further amplified the procedures for identifying whether tariff filings 
are statutory, explaining that only eTariff filings using the proper 
filing codes would establish the applicable filing and notice 
requirements under the NGA, FPA, and ICA.\11\ In this regard, the 
Commission stated that the filer's choice of electronic filing codes 
determines whether a filing has a statutory action date, and not 
statements in transmittal letters or other documents.\12\
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    \7\ 18 CFR 35.7, 154.4, 157.217, 284.123, 284.224, 300.10, 
341.1.
    \8\ Order No. 714 used the term ``tariff'' to refer to tariffs, 
rates schedules, jurisdictional contracts, and other jurisdictional 
agreements that are required to be on file with the Commission. See 
Order No. 714, FERC Stats. & Regs. ] 31,276 at P 13 n.11.
    \9\ The Commission indicated that grandfathered agreements did 
not need to be refiled as part of the initial baseline filing to 
place jurisdictional agreements in eTariff. Order No. 714, FERC 
Stats. & Regs., Regulations Preambles 2008-2013 ] 31,276, at P 92 
(2008). Such agreements, therefore, may be cancelled under section 
35.17 of the regulations without the submission of an eTariff 
statutory filing.
    \10\ Id. P 23.
    \11\ Electronic Tariff Filings, 130 FERC ] 61,047 (2010).
    \12\ Id. P 4.
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    4. Despite the passage of three years since the implementation of 
electronic tariff filing, many filers still are incorrectly filing what 
purport to be statutory filings, either by not making the filings 
through eTariff or by not using the proper filing codes for statutory 
filings.\13\ We are therefore revising sections 35.7, 154.4, and 341.1 
of the Commission's regulations to reflect the Commission's required

[[Page 29076]]

procedures and practices to better ensure accurate filing. The 
regulations now will provide explicitly that only tariff filings 
properly filed as and designated as statutory filings according to the 
Commission's eTariff requirements will be considered to have statutory 
action dates, and that tariff filings not properly filed and designated 
as statutory filings will not become effective in the absence of 
Commission action. We also are similarly amending section 385.205 to 
provide explicitly that a tariff filing must be made electronically, 
according to the requirements and formats for electronic filing posted 
by the Secretary.\14\
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    \13\ As the Commission indicated in Electronic Tariff Filings, 
Commission staff would endeavor to call (and, in fact, have 
frequently called) filers to identify filings with transmittal 
letters that purport to be making statutory filings but that were 
not properly filed electronically as statutory filings. Id. P 5.
    \14\ As we provided in Order No. 714, the Secretary of the 
Commission has delegated authority to make revisions to these 
instructions, including ``type of filing'' codes. 18 CFR 375.302(z). 
These instructions are available at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/etariff.asp.
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    5. To help filers verify the nature of their filing, the Commission 
enables filers to verify whether their electronic filings match their 
intent. Filers making electronic tariff filings are notified of the 
``type of filing'' code used in the responsive emails by the Secretary 
to their electronic filing, and the Commission's eLibrary filing 
description includes the ``type of filing'' code.\15\
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    \15\ Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, eTariff, eTariff 
Email Templates, (http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/etariff.asp), 
http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/etariff/etariff-temp.pdf.
    The statutory filing codes are listed in the ``Type of Filing'' 
Rules Table posted on the Commission's eTariff Web site, http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/etariff/types-filing-rules-table.pdf 
(Statutory Filings are those denominated under the heading ``Filing 
Category'' as ``Normal'', ``Cancellation'', and ``Baseline New'').
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II. Information Collection Statement

    6. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) regulations require OMB to 
approve certain information collection requirements imposed by agency 
rule.\16\ However, this instant Final Rule does not contain or modify 
any information collection requirements.
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    \16\ 5 CFR 1320.12.
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III. Environmental Analysis

    7. The Commission is required to prepare an Environmental 
Assessment or an Environmental Impact Statement for any action that may 
have a significant adverse effect on the human environment.\17\ Part 
380 of the Commission's regulations lists exemptions to the requirement 
to draft an Environmental Analysis or Environmental Impact Statement, 
and this rulemaking qualifies under the exemption for procedural, 
ministerial or internal administrative actions.\18\
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    \17\ Regulations Implementing the National Environmental Policy 
Act of 1969, Order No. 486, 52 FR 47897 (Dec. 17, 1987), FERC Stats. 
& Regs. ] 30,783 (1987).
    \18\ 18 CFR 380.4(a)(1).
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IV. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    8. The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA) \19\ generally 
requires a description and analysis of final rules that will have 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 
This instant Final Rule concerns agency procedures. The Commission 
certifies that it will not have a significant economic impact upon 
participants in Commission proceedings. An analysis under the RFA is 
thus not required.
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    \19\ 5 U.S.C. 601-12.
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V. Document Availability

    9. In addition to publishing the full text of this document in the 
Federal Register, the Commission provides all interested persons an 
opportunity to view and/or print the contents of this document via the 
Internet through the Commission's Home Page (http://www.ferc.gov) and 
in the Commission's Public Reference Room during normal business hours 
(8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern time) at 888 First Street NE., Room 2A, 
Washington, DC 20426.
    10. From the Commission's Home Page on the Internet, this 
information is available on eLibrary. The full text of this document is 
available on eLibrary in PDF and Microsoft Word format for viewing, 
printing, and/or downloading. To access this document in eLibrary, type 
the docket number excluding the last three digits of this document in 
the docket number field.
    11. User assistance is available for eLibrary and the Commission's 
Web site during normal business hours from FERC Online Support at 202-
502-6652 (toll free at 1-866-208-3676) or email at 
ferconlinesupport@ferc.gov, or the Public Reference Room at (202) 502-
8371, TTY (202) 502-8659. Email the Public Reference Room at 
public.referenceroom@ferc.gov.

VI. Effective Date and Congressional Notification

    12. The Commission is issuing this rule as an instant Final Rule 
without a period for public comment. Under 5 U.S.C. 553(b), notice and 
comment procedures are unnecessary where a rulemaking concerns only 
agency procedure or practice, or where the agency finds that notice and 
comment is unnecessary. This rule concerns only matters of agency 
procedure, and will not significantly affect regulated entities or the 
general public.

List of Subjects

18 CFR Part 35

    Electric power rates, Electric utilities, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements, Electricity.

18 CFR Part 154

    Natural gas, Pipelines, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, 
Natural gas companies, Rate schedules and tariffs.

18 CFR Part 341

    Maritime carriers, Pipelines, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

18 CFR Part 385

    Administrative practice and procedure, Electric power, Penalties, 
Pipelines, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    By the Commission.
Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr.,
Deputy Secretary.

    In consideration of the foregoing, the Commission amends parts 35, 
154, 341, and 385, Chapter I, Title 18, Code of Federal Regulations, as 
follows:

PART 35--FILING OF RATE SCHEDULES AND TARIFFS

0
1. The authority citation for part 35 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 791a-825r, 2601-2645; 31 U.S.C. 9701; 42 
U.S.C. 7101-7352.


0
2. Section 35.7 is amended by revising the section heading, and adding 
paragraph (d) to read as follows:


Sec.  35.7  Electronic filing of tariffs and related materials.

* * * * *
    (d) Only filings filed and designated as filings with statutory 
action dates in accordance with these electronic filing requirements 
and formats will be considered to have statutory action dates. Filings 
not properly filed and designated as having statutory action dates will 
not become effective, pursuant to the Federal Power Act, should the 
Commission not act by the requested action date.

PART 154--RATE SCHEDULES AND TARIFFS

0
3. The authority citation for part 154 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 15 U.S.C. 717-717w; 31 U.S.C. 9701; 42 U.S.C. 7102-
7352.


0
4. Section 154.4 is amended by adding paragraph (d) to read as follows:


Sec.  154.4  Electronic filing of tariffs and related materials.

* * * * *

[[Page 29077]]

    (d) Only filings filed and designated as filings with statutory 
action dates in accordance with these electronic filing requirements 
and formats will be considered to have statutory action dates. Filings 
not properly filed and designated as having statutory action dates will 
not become effective, pursuant to the Natural Gas Act, should the 
Commission not act by the requested action date.

PART 341--OIL PIPELINE TARIFFS: OIL PIPELINE COMPANIES SUBJECT TO 
SECTION 6 OF THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE ACT

0
5. The authority citation for part 341 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7101-7352; 49 U.S.C. 1-27.


0
6. Section 341.1 is amended by adding paragraph (d) to read as follows:


Sec.  341.1  Electronic filing of tariffs and related materials.

* * * * *
    (d) Only filings filed and designated as filings with statutory 
action dates in accordance with these electronic filing requirements 
and formats will be considered to have statutory action dates. Filings 
not properly filed and designated as having statutory action dates will 
not become effective, pursuant to the Interstate Commerce Act, should 
the Commission not act by the requested action date.

PART 385--RULES OF PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE

0
7. The authority citation for part 385 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 551-557; 15 U.S.C. 717-717z, 3301-3432; 16 
U.S.C. 791a-825v, 2601-2645; 28 U.S.C. 2461; 31 U.S.C. 3701, 9701; 
42 U.S.C. 7101-7352, 16441, 16451-16463; 49 U.S.C. 60502; 49 App. 
U.S.C. 1-85 (1988).


0
8. Section 385.205 is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  385.205  Tariff or rate filings (Rule 205).

    (a) A person must make a tariff or rate filing in order to 
establish or change any specific rate, rate schedule, tariff, tariff 
schedule, fare, charge, or term or condition of service, or any 
classification, contract, practice, or any related regulation 
established by and for the applicant.
    (b) A tariff or rate filing must be made electronically in 
accordance with the requirements and formats for electronic filing 
listed in the instructions for electronic filings. A tariff or rate 
filing not made in accordance with these requirements and formats will 
not have a statutory action date and will not become effective should 
the Commission not act by the requested action date.

[FR Doc. 2014-11767 Filed 5-20-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6717-01-P