On January 19, 2021 FERC issued an order on the North American Electric Reliability Corporation’s (“NERC”) compliance filings submitted pursuant to the Commission’s January 2020 order on NERC’s five-year performance assessment. FERC’s January 19 order approved NERC’s proposed modifications to its Rules of Procedure regarding: (1) Electricity Information Sharing and Analysis Center (“E-ISAC”); (2) Sanction Guidelines; and (3) Registration and Certification. FERC also accepted NERC’s description of its Reliability Guidelines process, its explanation on E-ISAC operations, and its explanation of its All Points Bulletins (“APBs”) issuances. However, FERC denied NERC’s proposal to replace its Appendix 4A audit process with an alternative program and directed NERC to submit completed reports on its audits for all six Regional Entities by June 30, 2023. Finally, the order directed NERC to submit an additional compliance filing within 120 days of the order that: (a) clarifies information sharing between NERC and the E-ISAC; and (b) revises its Rules of Procedure to explicitly require NERC to share all APBs with the Commission no later than at the time of issuance.
Separately, FERC issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking proposing that NERC submit performance assessments every three years as opposed to every five years. The NOPR requires the assessment to discuss any areas of the ERO’s responsibilities and activities, and proposes formalizing the method for the ERO to receive and respond to regional recommendations for improvement of the ERO’s operations, activities, oversight, and procedures. Comments on the NOPR are due 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.