PMC PROPERTY GROUP, INC., ET AL.
PUBLIC UTILITIES REGULATORY AUTHORITY ET AL.
January 15, 2019
from the decision of the named defendant finding that the
plaintiffs had engaged in the unauthorized submetering of
electricity and imposing sanctions, brought to the Superior
Court in the judicial district of New Britain and tried to
the court, Schuman, J.; judgment sustaining in part the
plaintiffs' appeal, from which the plaintiffs appealed to
this court. Affirmed.
MichaelJ. Donnelly, with whom was Paul R.McCary, for the
L. Marconi, assistant attorney general, with whom was George
Jepsen, former attorney general, for the appellee (named
A. Rosenthal, for the appellee (defendant Office of Consumer
Vincent P. Pace, for the appellee (defendant The Connecticut
Light and Power Company).
Jeffrey R. Babbin, for the appellee (defendant The United
Lavine, Bright and Harper, Js.
plaintiffs, PMC Property Group, Inc. (PMC), and Energy
Management Systems, Inc. (EMS), appeal from the trial
court's judgment affirming in part the decision of the
defendant Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (authority),
which found that the plaintiffs had engaged in the
unauthorized submetering of electricity and, pursuant to that
finding, imposed sanctions. On appeal, the plaintiffs claim
that the court erred in (1) deferring to the authority's
definition of electric submetering where that definition was
not time-tested with respect to the heating and air
conditioning system at issue in this appeal and (2) affirming
the authority's determination that the plaintiffs'
use of the heating and air conditioning system constituted
submetering of electricity. We affirm the judgment of the
following facts, as found by the authority and adopted by the
trial court, and procedural history are relevant to our
resolution of this appeal. PMC owns and is the property
manager of a multifamily apartment building located at 38
Crown Street, New Haven. The apartment building has
sixty-five residential apartments and one commercial unit
(rental space). EMS provides billing services for PMC. In
2011, the plaintiffs renovated the building and installed a
heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system
manufactured by Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating, a
division of Mitsubishi Electric & Electronics USA, Inc.
(Mitsubishi). The HVAC system is a heat pump system with
and valves are installed in the indoor piping of each rental
space and are used with computer software to measure the HVAC
thermal use of each space. Each rental space has a thermostat
to control its heating and cooling level, and is separately
served through its own meter from The United Illuminating
Company (electric company). PMC's electric service is
measured through one electric company meter that supplies
electricity to seven HVAC outdoor units and the common areas
of the building. Two nonutility wattmeters installed after
PMC's electric company meter measure the electricity used
by the seven outdoor units and provide an input signal to an
HVAC billing program.
March, 2012, PMC, acting through EMS, began billing each
tenant for a portion of the seven HVAC compressors'
electric use in proportion to the HVAC thermal use of the
rental space of each tenant. On August 17, 2012, the Office
of Consumer Counsel and the state attorney general filed a
joint petition requesting that the authority investigate
possible unauthorized submetering at PMC's apartment
building. The authority conducted a hearing on November 19,
2012, and rendered a decision on June 5, 2013. In its
conclusion, the authority ruled that PMC conducted
unauthorized submetering at the building. The authority then
entered an order providing that PMC shall immediately stop