The CER/CRU Strategic Plan for the period 2014-18 outlines the Commission’s goals for this five year period as well as high level strategies and actions to achieve these goals.
The Commission’s aim is to strike a balance between all of these goals to ensure the public interest is protected overall. The Commission will also be guided by Government Policy objectives and international commitments such as renewable energy targets.
The Strategic Plan can be viewed here. This plan will be reviewed in early 2018 and a new strategic plan developed.
The Strategic Plan has set out the Mission, Vision and Values for the organisation
Regulating Water, Energy and Energy Safety in the Public Interest
The Vision of the Commission is as follows:
The short and long run interests of the public are protected by ensuring:
- energy and gas are supplied safely;
- the lights stay on;
- the gas continues to flow;
- a reliable supply of clean water and efficient treatment of wastewater;
- consumer prices for energy and water are fair and reasonable; and
- regulation is best international practice.
In fulfilling our mission and our statutory functions, it is vital that the CRU develops and adheres to key values for the organisation so that all stakeholders, and particularly the public, trust us and have faith that we will serve them properly as an independent regulator.
In regulating we stress that:
- We are committed to public service – we will always act in the public interest
- We act with integrity in everything we do
- We are professional in our dealings with stakeholders
- We are accessible to stakeholders – we listen to what people have to say
- We are proportionate and objective – we take balanced decisions
- We are transparent – we are open to scrutiny and are committed to explaining our decisions
- We are accountable for our decisions and for the way we spend our resources
- We value and develop our staff – they are our chief resource
Under these guiding principles, the Commission has set the following strategic goals for the period:
Goal 1 To ensure that “energy and gas are supplied safely”
A world class public safety record
Goal 2 To ensure that “the lights stay on”
Secure electricity supplies from production to consumption
Goal 3 To ensure that “the gas continues to flow”
Secure natural gas supplies with improved diversity of sources
Goal 4 To ensure “a reliable supply of clean water and efficient treatment of wastewater”
Secure, robust water supplies and waste water disposal
Goal 5 To ensure that “the prices charged are fair and reasonable”
Fully competitive wholesale and retail markets and well-regulated networks, delivering fair and efficient prices to customers
Goal 6 To ensure “regulation is best international practice”
Living up to our values
The CRU is committed, on an annual basis, to delivering on the strategic goals it has set itself, as identified in the Strategic Plan 2014-18.
To support this plan, the CRU publishes an annual work plan which sets out detailed tasks designed to meet its mission statement and these strategic goals
Each year, the CRU identifies high level priorities to deliver on the CRU’s mission of ‘regulating water, energy and energy safety in the public interest’. Each of these high level priorities translate into detailed work streams and actions, that are set out in the different areas of Energy Safety, Energy Networks, Water Regulation, Smart Metering, Energy Markets and Operations.
The CER/CRU Work Plan for 2017 and our previous plans can be found here
The CRU prepares and publishes an annual report each year. The report describes the work delivered by the CRU over that calendar year with reference to the targets set in its annual work plan for that year.
As per statutory requirements, by 30th June each year the report is presented to the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources and (since Water Legislation was enacted in 2014) also to the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government who formally lay it before the Oireachtas. It is then published by the CRU on our website.
The CRU also keeps financial accounts and these are audited each year by the Comptroller and Auditor General. The accounts are also laid before the Oireachtas and published each year as part of the annual report.
Access to annual reports and accounts can be found through our publications page.
Procurement Policy and Procedures
Public Procurement: Public Procurement can be defined as the acquisition, whether under formal contract or not, of works, supplies and services by public bodies. It ranges from the purchase of routine supplies or services to formal tendering and placing contracts for large infrastructural projects by a wide and diverse range of contracting authorities. Competitive tendering is standard practice in the procurement process of the CRU. The CRU is committed to meeting its obligations as detailed in national and EU procurement law.
The aim of the CRU procurement function is to:
- Ensure compliance with national public sector and EU guidelines and directives.
- Enable the strategic objectives of the CRU to be met.
- Secure best value for money, reduce risk and modernise related business processes by adopting best practice procurement techniques for all bought-in external goods and services.
A comprehensive set of Procurement Processes and Procedures have been established since 2006 which are adequately developed to ensure compliance with competitive tendering requirements. Purchases may be made, only where provision has been made for the expenditure in the Commission’s Budget for the year. Procurement practices are subject to audit and scrutiny under the Comptroller and Auditor General (Amendment) Act 1993 and Accounting Officers are publicly accountable for expenditure incurred.
It is a basic principle of public procurement that a competitive process should be used unless there are justifiable exceptional circumstances. The type of process varies depending on the size and characteristics of the contract to be awarded. The advice of the Senior Manager – Finance and/or Procurement Officer is obtained prior to any tendering activity to determine whether it should be conducted in accordance with EU or national procurements rules and regulations.
The thresholds (exclusive of VAT) which must be applied, and form part of the CRU Procurement Policies and Procedures are as follows;
- Supplies or services less than €5,000 in value may be purchased on the basis of verbal quotes from one or more competitive suppliers.
- Supplies or services between €5,000 and €25,000 in value, not part of a ‘draw down’ or Office of Government Procurement (OGP) framework contract, using the restrictive process, potential Suppliers of Goods or Services will be invited to submit their Quotation using the Request for Quotation (RFQ) document as issued by Procurement. In each case the specifics of what is required will be identified by the CER with the contract awarded on basis of responses received.
- Supplies or Services between €25,000 and €209,000 in value, not part of a ‘draw down’ or OGP framework contract, should avail of a more formal process through advertisement of tender documents on http://www.etenders.gov.ie/ using the Open procedure.
- Supplies or Services in the case of contracts in excess of EU thresholds, currently €209,000 the specific rules governing the competitive process are set out, in considerable detail in SI No. 284 of 2016. Tender documents are prepared and published on the both the http://www.etenders.gov.ie/ and the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU).
Purchase Order Limits:
Approval of Purchase Orders is limited to the cost category for which a Commissioner and/or Member of staff has a certifying role.
Current Tenders Opportunities
Details of all current and completed tender competitions, over €25,000 (exclusive of VAT), are available on http://www.etenders.gov.ie/ For tender competitions valued above the EU thresholds, the contract notice is also published on the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) Tenders electronic Daily (TED) link: http://ted.europa.eu/TED/main/HomePage.do
Contracts – Contract Award Notice
On completion of a published tender competition, the Commission publishes an award notice on http://www.etenders.gov.ie/. For larger contracts, above the EU thresholds, the award notice is also published on the OJEU TED: http://ted.europa.eu/TED/main/HomePage.do
Procurement – CRU Payments goods and services over €20,000
In line with the Programme for Government, CRU will publish details of payments for goods and services valued at €20,000 or more. This information is published quarterly in arrears and can be downloaded in PDF format from the following location: Click Here
If you have any other queries regarding procurement opportunities with the CRU, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Prompt Payment Policy
CRU is committed to making every effort to pay its suppliers promptly. In this regard suppliers can help by ensuring that:
- Correct invoices are sent directly to Accounts Payable.
- Invoices quote a valid CRU Purchase Order Number / Contract Reference.
- Accurate bank account details are provided
- Their Tax Clearance status with the Irish Revenue Commissioners is up to date.
In the case of all public sector contracts of a value of €10,000 (inclusive of VAT) or more within any 12-month period, the contractor (and agent or sub-contractor as appropriate) will be required to produce either a valid tax clearance certificate or a C2 certificate. This is a mandatory requirement. Full details on tax clearance procedures may be found on the Revenue Commissioners website.
Prompt Payment Quarterly Returns
To view the Prompt Payment Quarterly Returns please: Click Here
Prompt Payment of Accounts Legislation
Payment of invoices by CRU is governed by the Prompt Payment of Accounts Act, 1997 as amended by the European Communities (Late Payment in Commercial Transactions) Regulations 2012.
15-Day Payment Requirement
The Government extended the non-statutory requirement applicable to Central Government Departments to all public bodies from July 2011, to reduce the payment period by Public Bodies to their suppliers from 30 to 15 days. Every effort, consistent with proper financial procedures, is being made to ensure that all suppliers are paid within this timeframe.
The CRU was initially established as the Commission for Electricity Regulation (CER) under the Electricity Regulation Act, 1999. The functions of the CRU along with its name were changed by the Gas (Interim Regulation) Act, 2002. Under that Act, its remit was expanded to include the regulation of the natural gas sector and our name was changed to the Commission for Energy Regulation.
As well as these founding pieces of legislation, the functions and duties of the CRU were altered and expanded significantly by legislation transposing EU directives into Irish law and the introduction of new primary legislation, including the Energy (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2006, Electricity Regulation (Amendment) (Single Electricity Market) Act 2007 and the Petroleum (Exploration and Extraction) Safety Act 2010.
These pieces of legislation gave the CRU powers in relation to the all-island Single Electricity Market (SEM) and they have also given the organisation safety-related responsibilities in the energy sector.
The text of all relevant European Energy Legislation can be found at the European Commission DG websites as follows:
The Energy Act 2016 (No. 12 of 2016) was signed by the President on the 30th of July 2016, and provides for various amendments of the Electricity Regulation Act 1999, the Gas Act 1976, the NORA Act 2007 and the Sustainable Energy Act 2002 and the Registration of Title Act 1964.
- The renaming of the Commission For Energy Regulation (CER) as the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU),
- A wider definition of the existing Single Electricity Market (SEM), to facilitate the North/South regulators' integrated Single Electricity Market, or I-SEM, project,
- Enhanced enforcement powers for the Commission for Energy Regulation, including powers to impose administrative sanctions,
- Increases in existing penalty levels on conviction from those already in the 2014 REMIT Statutory Instrument which relate to market abuse offences in the wholesale electricity and gas markets pursuant to the requirements of the EU's REMIT Regulation,
The CRU functions and duties in the water sector are set out in the Water Services Act 2013 and in more recent legislation in the Water Services (No.2) Act 2013.
For a full list of the guiding legislation for energy and water, please consult www.irishstatutebook.ie.
Code of Conduct
The Protected Disclosures Act 2014 aims to protect people who raise concerns about possible wrongdoing in the workplace.
The Act, which came into effect on 15 July 2014, is often called the whistleblower legislation. It provides for redress for employees who are dismissed or otherwise penalized for having reported possible wrongdoing in the workplace.
As set out in Statutory Instrument 339 of 2014 Protected Disclosures Act 2014 (Section 7(2)) Order 2014 the Commissioners of the CRU are prescribed to be recipients of disclosures of relevant wrongdoings.
Section 22 of the Protected Disclosures Act 2014 Requires the Publication of a report by public bodies no later than 30 June each year relating to the number of Protected Disclosures made in the preceding year, and of the actions, if any, taken in response to such disclosures.
The CRU can confirm that no Protected Disclosures were made to the CRU between the period January 2017 and 31 December 2017.
The CRU Privacy Notice sets out how we protect the privacy rights of individuals and can be found here.