DF 98-032
                         New England Power Company
           Petition for Authority to Issue and Renew Short-Term
           Order Granting New England Power Company's Motion for
               Confidential Treatment of Certain Information
                         O R D E R   N O.  22,888
                              March 30, 1998
         On March 16, 1998, New England Power Company (NEP)
     filed with the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission
     (Commission) a Motion for Confidential Treatment of Certain
     Information (Motion) submitted in support of its Petition for
     Authority with Respect to the Issuance and Renewal of Short-Term
     Securities.  The information requested to be treated as
     confidential pertains to financial forecasts relating to NEP.
         In its Motion, NEP seeks protection of financial
     information required by N.H. Admin. Rule Puc 308.11.  NEP states
     that the information is confidential and competitive information
     which falls within the exemption from public disclosure of RSA
     91-A:5, IV and N.H. Admin. Rules, Puc 204.06.  NEP further states
     that release of the information could be harmful to NEP's
     business position and could affect financial markets, and that
     its release would be inappropriate.
         In its Motion, NEP states that the documents contain
     confidential financial and competitive information which fall
     within the exemption from public disclosure of RSA 91-A:5, IV and
     N.H. Admin. Rules, Puc 204.06.  NEP also states that it does not,
     as a matter of policy, disclose the identified information and
     terms to anyone outside its corporate affiliates and
     representatives or under nondisclosure agreements or requests for
     protective treatment.
         The Commission recognizes that the information
     identified above is critical to the review of the NEP filing by
     the Commission. This is the type of information which was
     anticipated would be protected when N.H. Admin. Rules, Puc 204.06
     was adopted.  The Commission also recognizes that the information
     contained in the filing is sensitive commercial information in a
     competitive market.  Thus, based on NEP's representations, under
     the balancing test we have applied in prior cases, e.g., Re New
     England Telephone & Telegraph Company (Auditel), 80 NH PUC 437
     (1995); Re Bell Atlantic, Order No. 22,851 (February 17, 1998);
     Re EnergyNorth Natural Gas, Inc., Order No. 22,859 (February 24,
     1998), we find that the benefits to NEP of non-disclosure in this
     case outweigh the benefits to the public of disclosure.  The
     information, therefore, is exempt from public disclosure pursuant
     to RSA 91-A:5,IV and N.H. Admin. Rules, Puc 204.06.
         Based upon the foregoing, it is hereby
         ORDERED, that NEP's Motion for Confidential Treatment
     of Certain Information, filed on March 16, 1998, is GRANTED;
         FURTHER ORDERED, that this Order is subject to the
     ongoing rights of the Commission, on its own motion or on the
     motion of Staff, any party or any other member of the public, to
     reconsider this Order in light of RSA 91-A, should circumstances
     so warrant.
         By order of the Public Utilities Commission of New
     Hampshire this thirtieth day of March, 1998.
        Douglas L. Patch    Bruce B. Ellsworth        Susan S. Geiger
            Chairman           Commissioner            Commissioner
     Attested by:
     Thomas B. Getz
     Executive Director and Secretary