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     69-3-2005. Procurement -- cost recovery -- reporting. (1) In meeting the requirements of this part, a public utility shall:
     (a) conduct renewable energy solicitations under which the public utility offers to purchase renewable energy credits, either with or without the associated electricity, under contracts of at least 10 years in duration;
     (b) consider the importance of geographically diverse rural economic development when procuring renewable energy credits; and
     (c) consider the importance of dispatch ability, seasonality, and other attributes of the eligible renewable resource contained in the commission's supply procurement rules when considering the procurement of renewable energy or renewable energy credits.
     (2) A public utility that intends to enter into contracts of less than 10 years in duration shall demonstrate to the commission that these contracts will provide a lower long-term cost of meeting the standard established in 69-3-2004.
     (3) (a) Contracts signed for projects located in Montana must require all contractors to give preference to the employment of bona fide Montana residents, as defined in 18-2-401, in the performance of the work on the projects if the Montana residents have substantially equal qualifications to those of nonresidents.
     (b) Contracts signed for projects located in Montana must require all contractors to pay the standard prevailing rate of wages for heavy construction, as provided in 18-2-414, during the construction phase of the project.
     (4) All contracts signed by a public utility to meet the requirements of this part are eligible for advanced approval under procedures established by the commission. Upon advanced approval by the commission, these contracts are eligible for cost recovery from ratepayers, except that nothing in this part limits the commission's ability to subsequently, in any future cost-recovery proceeding, inquire into the manner in which the public utility has managed the contract and to disallow cost recovery if the contract was not reasonably administered.
     (5) A public utility or competitive electricity supplier shall submit renewable energy procurement plans to the commission in accordance with rules adopted by the commission. The plans must be submitted to the commission on or before:
     (a) June 1, 2013, for the standard required in 69-3-2004(4); and
     (b) any additional future dates as required by the commission.
     (6) A public utility or competitive electricity supplier shall submit annual reports, in a format to be determined by the commission, demonstrating compliance with this part for each compliance year. The reports must be filed by March 1 of the year following the compliance year.
     (7) For the purpose of implementing this part, the commission has regulatory authority over competitive electricity suppliers.

     History: En. Sec. 5, Ch. 457, L. 2005; Sec. 69-8-1005, MCA 2005; redes. 69-3-2005 by Sec. 1, Ch. 220, L. 2007; amd. Sec. 3, Ch. 246, L. 2007; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 232, L. 2009; amd. Sec. 17, Ch. 277, L. 2009.

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