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MPUC to Launch New Electronic Case Filing and Consumer Complaint System UPDATE
July 12, 2012
JULY 12, 2012 UPDATE:
MPUC Begins Launch of New Electronic Case Filing and Consumer Complaint System
On Thursday afternoon, July 12, the Public Utilities Commission began the transition from its current electronic filing system to the new electronic case filing and consumer complaint application. During the transition period, you may continue to e-file documents, but the documents will not appear on the virtual case file. Commission staff will enter these filings into the new case file when it becomes available. You may view the virtual case file, tariffs, and annual reports throughout the transition. The Commission will display an announcement when the new system becomes available, which is expected to be on Tuesday or Wednesday, July 17-18.
JUNE 6, 2012 UPDATE:
How do I Register to Participate in Cases in the New Electronic Case Filing Application?
If you are participating in a case at the MPUC now, there are steps you should take when the new Electronic Case Filing Application becomes effective.
• First, register as a User. Click on the Registered Users button on the MPUC web page, then click on New User Registration. Fill in the fields, considering the following:
• The Representing Company/Organization field is for the company you represent. This is not required except that if you will be filing in cases as representing a company or companies, then you will need to add those companies to your profile.
• The Registration screen requires the use of SPAM proof software called reCAPTCHA, so you will have to enter the two odd words presented to you in order to complete the registration process. If you cannot read one or more of the words, click on the refresh icon on the top right to get a new pair of words until you can read both.
• After submitting your registration you will receive an email notification with a hyperlink and instructions. You must go to the hyperlinked page and confirm your registration. (if clicking on the hyperlink does not work in your email system, copy and paste it into your browser’s URL field to go to the confirmation screen. Once this is done you will be registered to submit documents into the new application.
• Next, put yourself on the “Notification List” for each case you are participating in. To do this, again click on the Registered User button and log in using your User ID and password. Click on Manage Subscriptions. Partway down the screen, click on Subscribe to Case Notification List.
• On the next screen, enter the case number you are participating in. Click in all three boxes to receive notification of all filings made in the case. Hit Subscribe.
• The Lead MPUC staff person in the case will be alerted that you have completed this process.
MAY 15, 2012 UPDATE:
Maine Public Utilities Commission new Electronic Case Filing and Consumer Complain System to Launch June 8 – 12, 2012
This update provides information on the upgrade that the Public Utilities Commission will make to its electronic case filing and management system. The upgrade will make it easier to file, save, search, and access documents in Commission cases.
When will the new system be implemented?
The current Project Plan calls for the transition to take place in June. Data and document migration will begin at the close of business on Thursday, June 7, and the new system is scheduled to be available to all users on Tuesday, June 12. Consequently, the Commission will not accept any filings on Friday, June 8 or Monday, June 11.
We will spend the next few weeks conducting the final testing on the system and moving the application from the testing phase into production mode.
When can I get training?
As you know, the Commission will offer training and information to users of the new system before and after the application is launched. Written training materials will be handed out at the trainings and available on the Commission’s website for users who do not attend a training. Commission staff will also be available to answer questions from users after the new application is launched.
Users only need to attend one training session, as the material being covered at each session is identical. (Training is being offered on multiple dates due to space considerations and to accommodate user schedules to the greatest extent possible.)
In-person training sessions will be conducted at the Commission’s offices at 101 Second Street in Hallowell.
Training Sessions being offered before the launch of the new application are as follows:
• Thursday, May 31, 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM (lunch on your own from 11 – 12)
• Monday, June 4, 10 AM to 3 PM (lunch on your own from 12 – 1)
• Wednesday, June 6, 10 AM to 3 PM (lunch on your own from 12 – 1)
Training Sessions being offered after the launch of the new application are as follows:
• Wednesday, June 20, 10 AM to 3 PM (lunch on your own from 12 - 1)
• Thursday, June 21, 10 AM to 3 PM (lunch on your own from 12 - 1)
The Training Session will cover registration, filing and viewing functions in the morning, followed by tariff and annual report filing in the afternoon.
You don’t need to register in advance for a training session. However, if you know what session you plan to attend and wish to notify us by email you may contact us at email@example.com.
Directions to the Commission and parking instructions can be found here: http://www.maine.gov/mpuc/about/contactus.html
Will there be additional updates about this project?
Yes. Please continue to watch the NEWS section of our web page for up-to-date information about the Commission’s new electronic case filing and management system application: http://www.maine.gov/mpuc/news/index.shtml
MARCH 19, 2012 UPDATE:
What is happening?
In June 2012 the Public Utilities Commission will replace its current electronic filing system with a new electronic case filing and consumer complaint system to make it easier to file, save, search, and access documents in Commission cases. Once the new system is implemented, all case documents will be filed and available electronically. Additional benefits with the new system will include:
• Improved sorting and searching to make it easier to find case documents and to research topics in cases,
• Ability to keep track of data requests and responses,
• Automatic notices of filings to parties and to others who are interested,
• Robust security functions to manage confidential documents, making them available electronically but only to those given authorization to view them,
• Improved efficiency of the Consumer Assistance Division’s processes,
• Improved Commission case management and other internal processes.
When is it happening?
We expect the new system to be available by June 12, 2012.
Will I get a chance to see the new system before it is launched?
Yes. Before the new system becomes active, the Commission will offer training and other information to users of the system. Watch our web page for information on learning opportunities.
Will there be “down time” during the transition from the old system to the new system?
Yes. Immediately before the system becomes available, there will be a day or two during which you will not be able to file documents or access the case management system. Our website will provide the most up-to-date information regarding these dates.
Will I need to do anything to get ready?
Yes. There are ways you can prepare now for the new system:
• If you do not already file documents electronically, begin putting in place processes that allow you to do so.
• Identify a person to learn how to use the new system and coordinate its use in your company. Please email maine.PUC@maine.gov if that person has not already received an announcement about the new system.
• If you do not already file documents as text-searchable (i.e., electronically converted) PDF files, put in place processes for doing so.
• You will be asked to re-submit your tariffs, using conventions that will make them easily accessible to the public. Please watch for more information on our web page.
Will the system work the same as it does now?
The new system is a different application so it will not look like the current system, but it will let you make filings, submit annual reports and tariffs, search for documents and reports, and research cases, just as the current system does. The new system will have a series of screens that will direct you to enter the information necessary to carry out a task. The screens will generally be self-explanatory, but watch our web site for opportunities to learn how to use the new system.
Will I still file things electronically?
Yes. You will still electronically submit case filings, annual reports, tariffs, data requests, and all other submissions you make to the Commission. To do so, you will log on to the new system and go to computer screens where you will enter information about your filing. The screens will tell you what information must be entered, such as the docket number and the filer you represent. The screens will allow you to access your own electronic documents and specify the ones you wish to submit. You will not submit paper at all – you will do all your filings through the new computer screens.
Customers wishing to file a complaint against a utility can also do so electronically. Additionally, the Consumer Assistance Division will continue to take phone calls from customers.
Will I still file paper copies?
No, you will no longer submit paper copies of your filings.
Must I still serve other parties with my filings in adjudicatory cases?
No. When you make a filing in an adjudicatory case, the new system will send an email to all parties in the case, notifying them of the filing. They may then view the filing on the system. Thus, you no longer need to serve notice or provide paper or electronic copies of filings to other parties.
How will the system handle confidential material?
The new system has rigorous safeguards to protect confidential material.
You will file confidential documents electronically through the new computer screens. You will specify on the screens that the filing is confidential, and you will enter the Protective Order governing approved access to the document. The system will grant viewing access only to persons who the Commission Staff has designated as having such permission. Protective Orders will govern the parties or persons designated by the Commission. You will no longer send confidential documents to other parties in the case, as many filers do now.
Persons with permission to view a particular confidential document will be able to find and view it through the system’s computer screens.
Will Consumer Assistance Division filings be made in the same fashion as other Commission filings?
Consumer Assistance Division cases will also be handled by the new system. Customers will be able to submit complaints or questions on a computer screen, or they may phone a Consumer Specialist as they often do now. Most letters and emails associated with consumer cases will be exchanged between the Commission and utilities in the same manner they are done now. However, certain utility filings such as variance requests will be made through the new system. Consumer appeals will be handled through the new system in the same manner as are all other Commission cases.
Will current/open cases be migrated over to the new system?
Yes. All open cases will be present in the new system. All filings in those cases will be viewable, including confidential documents. Confidential documents will be viewable only by those persons who have been granted permission to do so through Protective Orders or other governing material in the case, and Commission staff will designate these parties or persons. You will be able to file a document in an open case as soon as you have registered as an active user.
Will closed cases be available to view online?
Yes. All closed cases will be present on the new system. All non-confidential filings in those cases will be viewable, but confidential documents will remain on paper only, as they are now.
Will I still be able to view Commission proceedings over the web?
Yes. The current process for live-streaming Commission proceedings over the web will not change.
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