Louisiana down ballot state executive elections, 2014
November 4, 2014
December 6, 2014
Public Services Commissioner
Louisiana is one of three states to use a blanket primary, or top-two system, which allows all candidates to run and all voters to vote but only moves the top two vote-getters, regardless of party affiliation, to the general election. In Louisiana, the runoff general election on December 6, 2014 is only required if no candidate receives 50 percent or more of the primary vote. If the runoff election is not needed, the race is decided with the one election (acting as both the primary and the general election) on November 4, 2014.
Public Service Commission
- Regulate all common carriers and public utilities and have such other regulatory authority as provided by law.
- Adopt and enforce reasonable rules, regulations, and procedures necessary for the discharge of its duties, and shall have other powers and perform other duties as provided by law.
|Office||Incumbent||Assumed Office||Incumbent running?||General Election Candidates||2014 Winner||Partisan Switch?|
|Public Service Commission||Eric Skrmetta
||2009||Yes|| Eric Skrmetta
|Public Service Commission||Foster Campbell
||2003||Yes|| Foster Campbell
Ethics concerns for Skrmetta
Eric Skrmetta (R) attracted attention and a challenger for his November re-election bid after ethics concerns emerged in early August. The Times-Picayune published a report on August 5, 2014, detailing an email exchange between the commissioner and Andrew B. Ezell from the Gulf State Renewable Energies Industry Association. This exchange reportedly included a request by Skrmetta for the organization's support ahead of the November election in exchange for his vote in support of more lenient metering policies in Louisiana. Ezell sent the request to members of the association on August 2, only four days prior to commission hearings about lifting the state's limit on payments to consumers using solar panels.
Skrmetta denied wrongdoing or an exchange of favors with solar energy firms following the paper's report. He noted in The Times-Picayune that the commission needed to review metering policy due to concerns about the viability of an unnamed solar firm based in the state. He faces scrutiny from challenger Forest Wright (R) and fellow commissioner Foster Campbell (D). Wright, an energy policy advocate based in New Orleans, cited Skrmetta's email as a motivation for his 2014 campaign. He previously sought the District 2 seat on the board in 2012. Campbell, who is seeking re-election to the District 5 seat, has been vocal in opposing changes to existing policy.
|August 20, 2014||First day for candidate qualification|
|August 22, 2014||Last day for candidate qualification|
|November 4, 2014||Primary election|
|November 17, 2014||Final day for vote certification if no runoff election is required|
|December 6, 2014||General election (if necessary)|
|December 18, 2014||Final day for vote certification if runoff election is required|
To learn more about developments in this race, check out the following news articles from Ballotpedia:
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- National Conference of State Legislatures Website, "State Primary Election Types," accessed January 6, 2014
- Fair Vote, "Congressional and Presidential Primaries: Open, Closed, Semi-Closed, and 'Top Two,'" accessed January 6, 2014
- Ballotpedia research conducted December 26, 2013 through January 3, 2014 researching and analyzing various state websites and codes.
- Louisiana Secretary of State, "Candidacy Inquiry, Unofficial," accessed August 21, 2014
- The Times-Picayune, "Email controversy ensnares Public Service Commission Chair Eric Skrmetta, solar proposal," August 5, 2014
State of Louisiana
Baton Rouge (capital)
|State executive officers||
Governor | Lieutenant Governor | Attorney General | Secretary of State | State Treasurer | Superintendent of Education | Commissioner of Insurance | Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry | Secretary of Natural Resources | Executive Director of the Workforce Commission | Chairman of Public Service Commission |