A Day at Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission
Gladys Brown is Chair of Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission.
Steve Mitnick is Editor-in-Chief of Public Utilities Fortnightly and author of the book “Lines Down: How We Pay, Use, Value Grid Electricity Amid the Storm.”
PUF’s Steve Mitnick: What is it like to be the chair of the Pennsylvania PUC? What’s an average day like?
Gladys Brown: It’s always busy, and I mean busy. Average day, as soon as I’m getting through the door, there’s always discussion of some issue that may come up. As the chair, I’m responsible for working with our executive director, with the everyday administrative issues, personnel issues.
We’re putting out a few fires here or there or making sure we have clarification on different things. We’re always talking about the next public meeting on an average day. Looking at some of the proposals from our bureaus and recommendations that will come to us to vote on. My staff and I, we discuss that on many occasions.
PUF: Here at the Pennsylvania PUC, your responsibilities are very broad. You regulate a very large number of utilities and other, different fields, even taxis.
Gladys Brown: We have jurisdiction over transportation, which includes taxicabs, but that’s only for sixty-six of the sixty-seven counties in Pennsylvania. In 2004 the General Assembly gave jurisdiction for taxicabs and transportation in the city and county of Philadelphia to the Philadelphia Parking Authority. They left the PUC with the other sixty-six counties.