A Day at Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission
John Coleman is Pennsylvania Utility Commissioner.
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’s a typical day like at the Pennsylvania Commission?
John Coleman: Each day can be very different from the next. One day I may be receiving a briefing from my team on the various public meeting items before us, such as rate cases, customer complaints or modernization of our regulations. The next day it may be meeting with the various regulated entities, or strategizing on a piece of legislation that is important to the commission.
I may be working on projects with the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, such as the recent Natural Gas Expansion Task Force that I co-chaired, where we looked at opportunities and impediments for natural gas expansion across the country. And at what it was that our commission could offer in terms of expertise, and share that with others who may be looking to expand natural gas service in their jurisdictions.
I may also be traveling around the state, or around the country, talking about our successes with competitive electric and natural gas shopping. Pennsylvania has been a leading state in advancing electric competition, and today more than seventy percent of the electricity load in Pennsylvania is provided by competitive electric suppliers.