At yesterday’s PUC budget hearing, Chairman Robert Powelson told lawmakers the utility will likely contract out the collection work to a private third party.
The agency already does so for other revenue-collection duties it holds, related to the Universal Service Fund on telephone service, and the new duties could follow a similar procedure, according to commissioners.
“We’ve got some rigid deadlines,” he said after taking questions from the Senate Appropriations Committee on Tuesday. He added that he believes the agency has sufficient resources and plans to allow for those first collections to begin on Sept. 1.
“In the short run, the collection and distribution of funds, we could do that … by putting an RFP (request for proposal) out and using a third party,” PUC Chairman Robert Powelson testified before the Senate Appropriations Committee on Tuesday.
Under the law signed by the governor on Monday, the PUC is charged with administering the collection and distribution of a fee that local governments may impose to address the impacts of unconventional natural gas drilling.
“We don’t necessarily have to build an apparatus internally to do this,” he said, pointing to the Universal Service Fund, a telecommunications fund under the authority of the PUC that is administered by a private company.