Troutman Sanders LLP

On March 11, 2019, a U.S. district court judge in California denied FERC’s motion to withdraw the reference of Pacific Gas and Electric’s (“PG&E”) adversary proceeding from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the ongoing jurisdictional dispute between FERC and the bankruptcy court.  In his ruling, Judge Haywood Gilliam Jr. of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California held that removal of the case from the bankruptcy courts was neither required nor permitted…
On March 11, 2019, PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. (“PJM”) made a filing informing FERC that it has begun advising Capacity Market Sellers to use both its existing capacity market rules, as well as its proposed Capacity Reform rules while it awaits a final order from FERC on the proposed reforms.  PJM stated that this approach ensures that all Capacity Market Sellers will have satisfied both the existing and PJM’s proposed pre-auction requirements prior to the conduct…
On March 6, 2019, the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission (“PUC”) declined to reconsider an earlier order refusing to enforce a newly-enacted mandatory biomass power purchase obligation, and associated subsidy scheme. Although the New Hampshire PUC ruled narrowly in both decisions, the law subsidizing state biomass generators at above-market rates is the latest in a series of recent state actions pushing the jurisdictional line between FERC and state authority (see, e.g., April 27, 2016 edition…
For at least the past 35 years, federal courts have generally allowed an administrative agency’s interpretation of a regulation or statute that it administers to prevail when challenged by a member of the regulated community or any other interested party. The ‘agency deference’ doctrine has been questioned in recent years, however, and a new case pending review before the Supreme Court may reverse or revise the doctrine as it relates to an agency’s interpretation of…
The Eastern District of Texas recently adopted a report from Magistrate Judge Christine A. Nowak finding that the Court lacked personal jurisdiction over an attorney and law firm in a pro se plaintiff’s Telephone Consumer Protection Act lawsuit.  The case is Cunningham v. Mark D. Guidubaldi & Assocs., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 38652 (E.D. Tex. Jan. 11, 2019). The TCPA suit was filed by Craig Cunningham, a Tennessee serial plaintiff who calls himself a“debt collection…
In light of recent challenges to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act on First Amendment grounds, a recent decision from the Middle District of Florida provides yet another clear example of the TCPA’s content-based discrimination.     The case, Gaza v. Navient Solutions LLC, No. 8:18-cv-1049, concerned calls made to a cell phone to collect a student loan debt.  The plaintiff, Jason Gaza, had taken out two federal student loans which were serviced by defendant, Navient Solutions…
On March 11, the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California approved a settlement stipulation between the parties in the long-running Fair Credit Reporting Act litigation involving Spokeo, Inc.  See Thomas Robins v. Spokeo, Inc., Case No. 2:10-cv-05306 (C.D. Cal.).  The settlement brings an end to the dispute that led to the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark 2016 ruling on the contours of Article III jurisdiction and the ability of courts to hear cases…
Author Stephen R. Covey has written, “Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall.”[1] With the first quarter in full swing, community banks are preparing proxy statements, finalizing annual meeting agendas, and marshaling items for board attention. Now is the perfect time for bank directors to consider whether their bank’s ladders are leaning against the right walls. Below we discuss five corporate governance…
The FTC issued a press release last week seeking comment on proposed changes to two rules under the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999 (the “GLBA Act”) to increase data security for financial institutions and better protect consumers.  The Commission has sought comment on the Safeguards Rule and the Privacy Rule under the GLBA Act. The Safeguards Rule, which went into effect in 2003, requires financial institutions to develop and maintain a comprehensive data security program. The…
On February 26, the Northern District of California held in Banneck v. Federal National Mortgage Association that the defendant, commonly referred to as “Fannie Mae,” was not a consumer reporting agency, or “CRA,” as defined in the Fair Credit Reporting Act, granting summary judgment in a putative nationwide class action.  The lawsuit had alleged violations of the FCRA and California Consumer Reporting Agencies Act (“CCRAA”).   The FCRA defines a CRA as (1) “any person which…