Difference between revisions of "Alabama Public Service Commission"

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[[File:Alabama exec org chart.png|200px|right|thumb|Click [http://web1.ballotpedia.org/wiki/images/Alabama_exec_org_chart.png here] to view a large-scale image of the Alabama state government organizational chart, as of 9/11/12.]]
 
Presidents of the Public Service Commission are elected on the first Tuesday after the first Monday every four years during presidential election years (2004, 2008, 2012, etc.). Two associate commissioners are elected every four years during congressional midterm election years (2006, 2010, 2014, etc.).<ref>[http://alisondb.legislature.state.al.us/acas/ACASLoginFire.asp ''Code of Alabama'', "Section 37-1-3," accessed May 31, 2011.]</ref> Presidents assume office on the day after election.
 
Presidents of the Public Service Commission are elected on the first Tuesday after the first Monday every four years during presidential election years (2004, 2008, 2012, etc.). Two associate commissioners are elected every four years during congressional midterm election years (2006, 2010, 2014, etc.).<ref>[http://alisondb.legislature.state.al.us/acas/ACASLoginFire.asp ''Code of Alabama'', "Section 37-1-3," accessed May 31, 2011.]</ref> Presidents assume office on the day after election.
  

Revision as of 12:32, 26 December 2013

Alabama Public Service Commission
General information
Office Type:  Partisan
Office website:  Official Link
2013 FY Budget:  $24,866,611
Total Seats:  3
Term limits:  None
Structure
Length of term:   6 years
Authority:  Code of Alabama, Title 37-1-1
Leadership:  Twinkle Cavanaugh (R)
Selection Method:  Elected
Elections
Next election:  November 4, 2014
Last election:  November 2, 2010
Other Alabama Executive Offices
GovernorLieutenant GovernorSecretary of StateAttorney GeneralTreasurerAuditorSuperintendent of EducationAgriculture CommissionerInsurance CommissionerNatural Resources CommissionerLabor CommissionerPublic Service Commission
The Alabama Public Service Commission is a quasi-executive, elected agency of the Alabama state government, responsible for regulating the state's utility companies. The commission's mission is to "ensure a regulatory balance between regulated companies and consumers in order to provide consumers with safe, adequate and reliable services at rates that are equitable and economical."

Current officeholder

The current commissioners are Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh (President) and Terry Dunn (R). Both were elected in 2010. Former commission President Lucy Baxley (D) was ousted in the 2012 general election by Cavanaugh, whom Baxley had originally defeated for the position in 2008. After losing to Cavanaugh, Baxley retired from politics. The third seat on the commission is held by Jeremy Oden who was appointed by Gov. Robert Bentley on November 30, 2012.[1]

Authority

The Alabama Public Service Commission was created by the Alabama Legislature in 1915 out of the Railroad Commission that was created in 1881. Between 1881-1915 the duties of the Commission were expanded to include regulating utilities that provided electricity, gas, water, and steam, leading the legislature to decide on the change. Since then it has been further expanded to include utility rates, motor transportation companies, air carriers, and natural gas transmission and distribution.[2]

The Public Service Commission's authority and duties and are established by Title 37 of the Code of Alabama.[3]

Section 37-1-1:

A commission to be known as the Public Service Commission, consisting of a president and two associates who shall be competent persons and qualified electors of this state, is established.

Qualifications

The only qualification established for members of the Public Service Commission is that the incumbent may not be an employee or have any "pecuniary interest," including stock ownership, in any utility.[4]

Code of Alabama, Section 37-1-6:

No person owning any stock in any utility, or in the employment of any utility or pecuniarily interested in any utility, as defined in this title, shall be eligible to the office of public service commissioner.

Elections

Click here to view a large-scale image of the Alabama state government organizational chart, as of 9/11/12.

Presidents of the Public Service Commission are elected on the first Tuesday after the first Monday every four years during presidential election years (2004, 2008, 2012, etc.). Two associate commissioners are elected every four years during congressional midterm election years (2006, 2010, 2014, etc.).[5] Presidents assume office on the day after election.

2012

Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh (R) defeated incumbent Lucy Baxley (D) for President of the Public Service Commission in the general election on November 6, 2012.

Alabama Public Service Commission President General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngTwinkle Cavanaugh 54.2% 1,078,108
     Democratic Lucy Baxley Incumbent 45.8% 909,323
Total Votes 1,987,431
Election Results via Alabama Secretary of State.


Term limits

There are no term limits for the Public Service Commission.

Vacancies

Details of vacancy appointments are addressed in Section 37-1-3 of the Alabama Code.[6] If a vacancy occurs on the public service commission, the governor has the power to fill the unexpired term.

Duties

Commissioners supervise and regulate the state's electricity, gas, water, railroad, and telecommunications companies. Additionally, it supervises transportation companies operating toll bridges, ferries, or roads. The Commission's mission is "To ensure a regulatory balance between regulated companies and consumers in order to provide consumers with safe, adequate and reliable services at rates that are equitable and economical."[2]

Divisions

The Public Service Commission consists of four divisions: Energy, Telecommunications, Transportation, and Legal.

Energy Division

The Energy Division "oversees the regulation of investor-owned electric, natural gas and water utilities under the Commission's regulatory authority. This responsibility includes monitoring rates and quality of service for 22 companies as well as enforcing safety rules for all natural gas and hazardous liquid pipeline systems in Alabama."[7] It consists of five sections: electricity, special projects, natural gas, gas pipeline safety, and water.




Telecommunications Division

The Telecommunications Division holds limited jurisdiction over the regulation of telephone service providers in Alabama. It has two main sections: the Economic Compliance Section and the Service Compliance Section.[8]




Transportation Division

The Transportation Division regulates air, motor, and rail carriers. Its six areas include annual reports, auditing, insurance, railway safety, rates and services, and registration.[9]




Legal Division

The Legal Division is composed of the Chief Administrative Law Judge, Administrative Law Judges, and legal secretaries. They provide legal assistance to the Commissioners, staff, and the public.[10]

State budget

The budget for the Public Service Commission in Fiscal Year 2012-2013 was $24,866,611.[11]

Compensation

See also: Compensation of state executive officers

In 2012, the Alabama public service commissioners were paid an estimated $103,490. This figure comes from the Council of State Governments.

Historical officeholders

Since 1881, Alabama has had 19 public service commission presidents.[12]

Click "show" for former officeholders.

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a google news search for the term Alabama + Public + Service + Commission

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

Alabama Public Service Commission News Feed

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Contact information

Alabama

Physical address:
100 N. Union Street, Suite 800
Montgomery, AL 36104

Phone: 334-242-5207
Email: Twinkle.Cavanaugh@psc.alabama.gov

See also

External links

References