Recently, Rhode Island legislators passed House Bill 8331, which sets minimum and maximum dollar amounts for non-regulated power producers’ required surety bond. The bill took effect with its passage on July 15, 2016.
Previously, there was no set bond amount for non-regulated power producers. The Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission (RIPUC) Division of Public Utilities and Carriers determined the surety bond amount on a case-by-case basis. HB 8331 introduces a $25,000 minimum and $500,000 maximum surety bond amount, though RIPUC still determines each producer’s bond amount. The bond ensures that producers obey consumer protection laws and comply with renewable energy regulations.
Non-regulated power producers must file a notarized registration application with RIPUC before conducting business (or electricity!). Some information required from applicants includes the following:
- Legal name and business address
- Name of state where the business was formed, date of formation and copy of articles of incorporation or other document regarding legal organization
- Name and business address of all partners or officials
- Name, title and telephone number of a customer service contact person, a regulatory contact person, a registered agent for service of process
- Brief description of nature of business
Non-regulated power producers must also show evidence of financial security, usually in the form of a surety bond. Producers also have the option of submitting a certificate of deposit, irrevocable letter of credit, a loan or another form of financial security. The bond’s amount is determined by RIPUC. Producers must be submit registration annually, and RIPUC will review their financial security at that time. The surety bond is meant to be used to pay penalties incurred by the non-regulated power producer by violating consumer protection or other laws. It can also be used to pay for fines or refunds imposed by RIPUC. Funds paid for violations will go to both the renewable energy development fund and the state general fund.
Contact RIPUC if you have questions about registration procedures or your non-regulated power producer surety bond. After determining your bond amount, contact the experts at SuretyBonds.com to get your Rhode Island surety bond.