[Source: Ryan Randazzo, Arizona Republic] — If you make monthly payments to Arizona Public Service Co., Tucson Electric Power Co., a small Arizona water provider or other regulated utility, you have three new public servants watching over those companies for you. Unofficial results from the Nov. 4 election show Democrats Paul Newman and Sandra Kennedy and Republican Bob Stump will join two Republicans remaining on the Arizona Corporation Commission. The regulators will tackle consumer issues such as a pending rate hike from APS in 2009 and for the first time in a decade have Democrats at the table. In addition to regulating utility rates, the Corporation Commission oversees telecommunications issues and securities fraud and has jurisdiction over railroad crossings.
Kennedy’s first steps will include working with state lawmakers in an attempt to save energy and money by moving the commission to a four-day workweek, she said. “I’d also like to see the Corporation Commission seriously look at how utility companies can help seniors,” she said Thursday. “We’re at a time when their income is not what it used to be. Are they showing the aged and low-income consumers how to effectively utilize energy efficiency?” [Note: To read the full article, click here.]