NRRI 79-4 COMPUTER ASSISTED REGULATORY ANALYSIS AND ITS POTENTIAL APPLICATION TO THE COLORADO PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION


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Last Updated August 6, 2018
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prepared by
Dr. Mark S. Gerber
Karl A. McDermott
The National Regulatory Research Institute
The Ohio State University
Columbus, Ohio

January 1979

The Colorado Public Utilities Commission, in order to increase its staff's capabilities to perform certain kinds of analyses, requested a legislative appropriation to implement in-house computer analysis. The Joint Budget Committee of the Colorado State Legislature in response called for an explanation of how this capability would be utilized in regulatory analyses. This document was prepared by The National Regulatory Research Institute to assist the Colorado Public Utilities Commission in answering that question.

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In the past several years state public utility commissions have experienced an increased need for information and for information processing. The reasons for this need have grown mainly out of the events of the 1970's: the oil embargo, energy shortages, the slowdown of the national economy, and inflation. The resulting rapid increase in utility costs and therefore, rates, has led to an increased work load on commission staffs. The increased involvement of the public and special interest groups in rate cases has brought to focus the need to quickly and accurately anaJyze information and apply that information to regulatory issues. The fact that the regulated utilities themselves increasingly use computer analyses for arguing their positions before regulatory bodies means that the public should be no less well equipped in weighing the validity of these representations.

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