By: Davis S.B. No. 2588
  relating to certain protections for customers in the restructured
  electric services market.
         SECTION 1.  Section 39.101, Utilities Code, is amended by
  amending Subsection (h) to read as follows:
         (h)  A retail electric provider, power generation company,
  aggregator, or other entity that provides retail electric service
  may not disconnect service to a residential customer during an
  extreme weather emergency or on a weekend day. The entity providing
  service shall defer collection of the full payment of bills that are
  due during an extreme weather emergency until after the emergency
  is over and shall work with customers to establish a pay schedule
  for deferred bills. For purposes of this subsection, "extreme
  weather emergency" means [a period when]:
               (1)  a period when the previous day's highest
  temperature did not exceed 32 degrees Fahrenheit and the
  temperature is predicted to remain at or below that level of the
  next 24 hours according to the nearest National Weather Service
  reports; [or]
               (2)  a day for which the National Weather Service
  forecasts that the [issues a] heat index will reach or exceed 105
  degrees Fahrenheit in [advisory for] any part of a county in the
  relevant service territory;[,] or
               (3)  a period when, [such an advisory has been issued]
  on any one of the previous two calendar days, the National Weather
  Service observes a heat index of 105 degrees Fahrenheit or more in
  any part of a county in the relevant service territory.
         SECTION 2.  Section 39.151(c), Utilities Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         (c)  The commission shall certify an independent
  organization or organizations to perform the functions prescribed
  by this section. The commission shall apply the provisions of this
  section and Sections 39.1511, 39.1512, [and] 39.1515, and 39.1516
  so as to avoid conflict with a ruling of a federal regulatory body.
         SECTION 3.  Subchapter D, Chapter 39, Utilities Code, is
  amended by adding Section 39.1516 to read as follows:
         Sec. 39.1516.  RETAIL ELECTRIC MARKET MONITOR. (a)  An
  independent organization certified under Section 39.151 shall
  contract with an entity selected by the commission to act as the
  commission's retail electric market monitor to detect and prevent
  market manipulation strategies, unfair, misleading, or deceptive
  practices and to recommend measures to enhance the efficiency of
  the retail market.
         (b)  The independent organization shall provide to the
  personnel of the retail market monitor:
               (1)  full access to the organization's records that
  concern operations, settlement, and reliability of the retail
  market; and
               (2)  other support and cooperation the commission
  determines is necessary for the retail market monitor to perform
  the retail market monitor's functions.
         (c)  The independent organization shall use money from the
  rate authorized by Section 39.151(e) to pay for the retail market
  monitor's activities.
         (d)  The commission is responsible for ensuring that the
  retail market monitor has the resources, expertise, and authority
  necessary to monitor the retail electric market effectively and
  shall adopt rules and perform oversight of the retail market
  monitor as necessary. The retail market monitor shall operate
  under the supervision and oversight of the commission. The
  commission shall retain all enforcement authority conferred under
  this title, and this section may not be construed to confer
  enforcement authority on the retail market monitor or to authorize
  the commission to delegate the commission's enforcement authority
  to the retail market monitor. The commission by rule shall define:
               (1)  the retail market monitor's monitoring
  responsibilities, including reporting obligations and limitations;
               (2)  the standards for funding the retail market
  monitor, including staffing requirements;
               (3)  qualifications for personnel of the retail market
  monitor; and
               (4)  ethical standards for the retail market monitor
  and the personnel of the retail market monitor.
         (e)  In adopting rules governing the standards for funding
  the retail market monitor, the commission shall consult with a
  subcommittee of the independent organization's governing body to
  receive information on how money is or should be spent for market
  monitoring functions. Rules governing ethical standards must
  include provisions designed to ensure that the personnel of the
  retail market monitor are professionally and financially
  independent from market participants. The commission shall develop
  and implement policies that clearly separate the policymaking
  responsibilities of the commission and the monitoring, analysis,
  and reporting responsibilities of the retail market monitor.
         (f)  The retail market monitor immediately shall report
  directly to the commission any potential market manipulations and
  any discovered or potential violations of commission rules or rules
  of the independent organization.
         (g)  The personnel of the retail market monitor may
  communicate with commission staff on any matter without
         (h)  The retail market monitor annually shall submit to the
  commission and the independent organization a report that
  identifies market design flaws and recommends methods to correct
  the flaws. The commission and the independent organization shall
  review the report and evaluate whether changes to rules of the
  commission or the independent organization should be made.
         SECTION 4.  Section 39.157, Utilities Code, is amended by
  amending Subsection (a) and adding Subsection (a-1) to read as
         (a)  The commission shall monitor market power associated
  with the generation, transmission, distribution, and sale of
  electricity in this state. On a finding that market power abuses or
  other violations of this section have occurred or are occurring,
  the commission shall require reasonable mitigation of the market
  power by one or any combination of the following:
               (1)  ordering the construction of additional
  transmission or distribution facilities;
               (2)  [, by] seeking an injunction or civil penalties as
  necessary to eliminate or to remedy the market power abuse or
  violation as authorized by Chapter 15;
               (3)  [, by] imposing an administrative penalty as
  authorized by Chapter 15;
               (4)  ordering refunds to affected parties pursuant to
  Section 17.157;
               (5)  with regard to the wholesale market, ordering
  refunds to affected parties in a manner established by the
  commission; or
               (6)  [, or by] suspending, revoking, or amending a
  certificate or registration as authorized by Section 39.356.
         (a-1)  The commission shall permit the office, in exercising
  its powers to represent residential and small commercial consumers,
  to participate in enforcement proceedings to seek refunds for
  alleged market power abuses or manipulation of the wholesale
  market. Section 15.024(c) does not apply to an administrative
  penalty imposed under this section. For purposes of this
  subchapter, market power abuses are practices by persons possessing
  market power that are unreasonably discriminatory or tend to
  unreasonably restrict, impair, or reduce the level of competition,
  including practices that tie unregulated products or services to
  regulated products or services or unreasonably discriminate in the
  provision of regulated services. For purposes of this section,
  "market power abuses" include predatory pricing, withholding of
  production, precluding entry, and collusion. A violation of the
  code of conduct provided by Subsection (d) that materially impairs
  the ability of a person to compete in a competitive market shall be
  deemed to be an abuse of market power. The possession of a high
  market share in a market open to competition may not, of itself, be
  deemed to be an abuse of market power; however, this sentence shall
  not affect the application of state and federal antitrust laws.
         SECTION 5.  Subchapter D, Chapter 39, Utilities Code, is
  amended by adding Section 39.1575 to read as follows:
  (a)  The commission shall investigate whether a retail electric
  provider is abusing market power or engaging in unfair, misleading,
  or deceptive practices. Retail electric providers shall cooperate
  with the commission in any investigation and shall provide
  information requested.
         (b)  The commission may assess administrative penalties
  under Section 15.023 for any violation discovered under this
         SECTION 6.  Subchapter Z, Chapter 39, Utilities Code, is
  amended by adding Sections 39.928 and 39.929 to read as follows:
  independent organization certified under Section 39.151 may not
  pass through to a retail customer or retail electric provider a cost
  or charge associated with nodal wholesale market design
  ENERGY PRICING INFORMATION. (a)  The commission shall publish on
  the Internet websites and charts or provide a link that
  compares the prices of:
               (1)  natural gas;
               (2)  real-time or balancing electric energy; and
               (3)  retail electricity.
         (b)  The commission shall provide that the charts be updated
  at least once each business day that the commission's offices are
         SECTION 7.  The Public Utility Commission of Texas shall
  adopt rules to implement the changes in law made by this Act as
  quickly as practicable.
         SECTION 8.  This Act takes effect immediately if it receives
  a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, as
  provided by Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution. If this
  Act does not receive the vote necessary for immediate effect, this
  Act takes effect September 1, 2009.