Federal regulators say they have a special group to head off potential electricity supply shortages in California this summer, but they are not revealing details and do not appear to have any new tricks up their sleeves. "A California team has been established," Joseph Kelliher, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission chair, said. He would not elaborate. "We remain concerned [because] Southern California has the worst electricity supply outlook in the nation. We?re ready to act if something happens." But the range of actions appears to be limited to emergency orders similar to those issued in 2000 that have since expired, according to Edward Kee, a member of the management group of PA Consulting Group, who has been representing Enron Marketing before the commission. However, any emergency action should come faster this time, Kee continued, explaining that official "fingers are closer to the trigger" this time. Asked about the meaning of the California team discussed by Kelliher, the consultant said, "it is not unusual [for FERC] to have a devoted team assigned" to the commission's highest priority. "An incredible amount of FERC's attention and efforts over the past few years has been devoted to California and the Western power crisis," he observed. He pointed out that the highest priority in the "Top Priorities" section of FERC's Web site remains "Addressing the 2000\/2001 Western Energy Crisis." It took FERC's press office three days to provide Circuit with a limited description of the team. "The commission has established a multioffice and multidisciplinary group of staff that reviews Western market operations, prices, weather, fire, etc. data systematically on a regular basis. The group is keeping close tabs on things and keeping the commissioners apprised. The group is in contact with various stakeholder interests. The group is prepared to advise the commission in the event problems occur," stated Celeste Miller, FERC spokesperson. She explained that "multi-office" means a combination of the Office of Markets, Tariffs, and Rates and the Office of Market Oversight and Investigations. Miller said the California team in Washington works hand in hand with the staff the commission has had in California for the past few years and declined to elaborate on the earlier statement. She said, "the information I provided gives you what we have to say on the team at this time." Commenting on the FERC staff already on the West Coast, California Independent System Operator spokesperson Gregg Fishman said, "We're glad to have them here," adding that their presence is "part of the improving relationship" between the commission and the state. However, he said that they were in a market-monitoring position, not one of operational action.