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Program A: Administrative

Program Authorization: La. Constitution, Article IV, Sec. 21; R.S. 36- Chapter 19

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The mission and goals of the Administrative Program are expressed by activity (organizational divisions).

The Administrative Program provides management and oversight and other administrative support to the other programs within the Department of Public Service, Public Service Commission, in order that they may carry out their assigned responsibilities and accomplish the commission's mission and goals.

The Administrative Program includes the following activities (organizational divisions): Executive, Docketing, Legal, and Management and Finance.

The mission of the Executive Division is to provide an efficient flow of technical and legal support to the five commissioners by way of a highly motivated and well-trained staff. The goal of the Executive Division is to provide ongoing technical, legal, and professional training for division heads and staff and create and maintain a balanced budget through a vigilant monitoring of collections concurrent with an equally vigilant approach toward reducing nonessential expenditures. The Executive Division, which includes the executive secretary and general counsel, coordinates all operations of the Public Service Commission except those performed in the district offices under supervision of individual commissioners. The executive secretary coordinates and supervises administrative staff activities; oversees the scheduling of public hearings, maintenance of all dockets, minutes and official records; processes and promulgates all orders and regulations; and initiates the necessary action to assure compliance with the commission's regulations and policies. The Executive Division is responsible for the transcription of public hearings for interested parties and for the courts. The division supplies the commissioners, public, and media with requested data. The executive secretary must keep abreast of all directives, proposed legislation, and statutes (whether federal or state) that could or do affect the operations of the commission. The executive secretary is the official custodian of all documents filed in connection with pending cases and has the duty of certifying same. The executive secretary must keep abreast of all directives, proposed legislation, new legislation, and federal and state statutes. The general counsel serves as legal representative of the commission before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Federal Communications Commission, and other state and federal regulatory bodies and at all levels of the judicial system. The general counsel renders legal advice to the commissioners and staff, assists unrepresentative parties before the commission, and drafts orders and decrees for commission actions.The general counsel, in some instances, serve as a hearing examiner.

The mission of the Docketing Division is to originate and categorize rules, regulations, orders and minutes of the commission, to be accessible to the staff, and general public in an efficient and timely manner. The goals of the Docketing Division are to safeguard all official records and documents with regard to archiving and permanent storage and organize all commission orders and casefile docket sheets in an electronic universal database format for access to staff and the public. This division has a staff of six and is responsible for the accurate and orderly processing of all formal proceedings that are acted upon by the commissioners; transcription of public hearings for interested parties and for the courts; filing all orders and decisions arising from these proceedings and maintains accurate filings. Complete and up-to-date information is maintained on each pending docket and an index is prepared and maintained of the ruling and recommendations of the administrative law judges.

The mission of the Legal Division is to faithfully execute and enforce the orders, rules, and regulations of the commission. The goals of the Legal Division are to provide thorough, accurate, and candid legal analysis and advice to the commission in all areas under the jurisdiction of the commission and endeavor to protect and advance the public interest concerning all cases and matters coming before the commission, and to represent the public interest with excellence, honesty, and integrity. The Legal Division has five and they represent the commission in all docketed cases regarding complaints against regulated utilities/motor carriers whether it relates to telecommunications, gas, water, sewer, and/or transportation. Additionally, the division represents the commission in all rate-making and rule-making proceedings for the same regulated utilities/motor carriers. Acting in a representational capacity, staff may investigate and/or request discovery regarding complaints and applications, prosecute regulated entities for violating commission orders/rules/regulations, initiate generic rule makings, and request the opening of dockets to set rates, develop regulatory plans and determine earnings.

The mission of the Management and Finance Division is to provide management oversight to the other divisions within the Public Service Commission, as well as supply the necessary administrative support (budgetary, human resources, training, purchasing, information services) in order that all staff can effectively carry out their assigned responsibilities. The goal of the Management and Finance Division is to establish guidelines and focus on continuous improvements and standardize processes. The Management and Finance Division has a staff of ten and provides various services necessary to the overall operation of the commission. These include human resource management (including administration of a comprehensive human resources program), fiscal management (including budget preparation and management, accounting, financial reporting, and purchasing), information services (including the coordination of all data processing activities of the commission), and office services (including mail and printing services, processing and distribution of 2,000 copies of the bi-weekly Official Bulletin, maintenance of supplies, property control, fleet management, telecommunications activities, and rental and leases program). The Management and Finance Division includes the following sections: Human Resource, Accounting and Budget Management, Management Information Systems (Data Processing), and Office Services.

OBJECTIVES AND PERFORMANCE INDICATORS

The Administration Program provides management and oversight to the agency. The success of this program is reflected in the success of other programs in the agency. Performance information consistent with this program's strategic plan and the statewide model for administrative/support programs will be reported next year. For FY 1998-99, program objectives and performance indictors include:

1. In FY 1998-99, the Administrative Program, through the Legal Division, will allow no more than 10 days to elapse between the PSC's vote and the issuance of the subject order (in those cases where the Legal Division has responsibility) and will reduce the time that elapses between the initiation of rule-making and PSC adoption of regulations or closure of the docket

1 This is a new performance indicator for which data have not been collected. Data for this indicator will be collected and reported beginning in FY 1998-99.

2. In FY 1998-99, the Administrative Program, through the Legal Division, will endeavor to provide the PSC with staff recommendations that are legally sound (as measured by the number of PSC orders based on staff recommendations that are/are not overturned by a court of competent jurisdiction).

1 This is a new performance indicator for which data have not been collected. Data for this indicator will be collected and reported beginning in FY 1998-99

3. In FY 1998-99,t he Administrative Program, through the Legal Division, will resolve, through hearing and open session, all rate cases within one year from the date of official filing.

1 This is a new performance indicator for which data have not been collected. Data for this indicator will be collected and reported beginning in FY 1998-99.

4. In FY 1998-99, the Administrative Program, through the Legal Division, will increase the number of cases and matters handled in-house and decrease the number of cases and matters handled by outside counsel; the division will also increase its participation in those cases assigned to outside counsel.

1 This is a new performance indicator for which data have not been collected. Data for this indicator will be collected and reported beginning in FY 1998-99.

5. In FY 1998-99, the Administrative Program, through the Management and Finance Division, will ensure that budget allocations are equal to or less than the total dollar amount collected.

1 Includes inspection and supervision fees, economic and rate analysis supplemental fees, and motor carrier fees.

2 Of these collections, 80% goes to the General Fund and 20% provide the funding for the PSC Motor Carrier Division (per Act 8971, 1992 Regular Session).

RESOURCE ALLOCATION FOR THE PROGRAM

SOURCE OF FUNDING

This program is funded from statutory dedications generated from inspection and supervision fees paid by common carriers, contract carriers, and public utilities. Additionally, various fees such as fines, filing fees, I.D. stamps, rehearing applications, registration fees, etc. are collected by the Public Service Commission for administering this program. (Per R.S. 39:32B.(8), see table below for a listing of expenditures out of each statutory dedicated fund.)

ANALYSIS OF RECOMMENDATION

GENERAL FUND

TOTAL

T.O.

 

DESCRIPTION

 

 

 

 

 

$0

$3,186,102

58

 

ACT 18 FISCAL YEAR 1997-1998

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BA-7 TRANSACTIONS:

$0

($1,541,732)

(32)

 

Realign budget to properly place positions and funding in appropriate programs

 

 

 

 

 

$0

$1,644, 370

26

 

EXISTING OPERATING BUDGET - December 10, 1997

 

 

 

 

 

$0

($73,710)

0

 

Equipment/Major Repairs Adjustment(s)

$0

$19,164

0

 

Annualization of 1997 -'98 Merit Pay Adjustments

$0

$18,088

0

 

1998 -'99 Merit Pay Adjustment(s)

$0

($76,454)

0

 

Attrition Adjustment(s)

$0

($4,945)

0

 

Retirement Rate Adjustment(s)

$0

$1,368

0

 

Adjustment(s) for Civil Service, Training and Other Statewide Interagency Transfer Activities

$0

$13,559

0

 

Risk Management Adjustment(s)

$0

($83)

0

 

Maintenance of State-owned Buildings Adjustment(s)

$0

$394

0

 

Uniform Payroll System charges

$0

$1,934

0

 

Legislative Auditor Fees

 

 

 

 

 

$0

$1,543,685

26

 

TOTAL RECOMMENDED

 

 

 

 

 

$0

($100,685)

0

 

DIFFERENCE (TOTAL RECOMMENDED AND EXISTING OPERATING BUDGET)

The total means of financing for this program is recommended at 93.8% of the existing operating budget. It represents 93.3% of the total request ($1,653,834) for this program. The decreased funding is primarily due to the removal of funding for nonrecurring acquisitions.

PROFESSIONAL SERVICE

This program does not have funding for Professional Services for Fiscal Year 1998-1999.

OTHER CHARGES

$16,539

 

Legislative Auditor

 

 

 

$16,539

 

TOTAL OTHER CHARGES

 

 

 

 

 

Interagency Transfers:

$3,970

 

Department of State for microfilming

$8,823

 

Department of Civil Service

$2,946

 

Uniform Payroll System

$1,506

 

Office of Information Services for data processing services

$1,402

 

Maintenance of state buildings

 

 

 

$18,647

 

TOTAL INTERAGENCY TRANSFERS

 

 

 

ACQUISITIONS AND MAJOR REPAIRS

$18,900

 

Replacement computer equipment

$19,890

 

Replacement office furniture

 

 

 

$38,790

 

TOTAL ACQUISITIONS AND MAJOR REPAIRS


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