A Day (Two Actually) at the California PUC
Martha Guzman Aceves was appointed Commissioner at the CPUC by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. on Dec. 28, 2016. She previously served as deputy legislative affairs secretary in the Office of the Governor. Earlier, she worked with Swanton Berry Farm on human resources issues. She was legislative coordinator for the United Farm Workers from 1999 to 2005, working on labor and environmental issues.
PUF's Steve Mitnick: How did your career lead you to become a commissioner?
Martha Guzman Aceves: I worked in the governor's office and was part of the legislative team.
I was a legislative advisor on energy and environment for almost six years there. Then I was asked to serve on the commission, and I said yes.
PUF: Do you specialize on certain issues? Or do you just take them as they come?
Guzman Aceves: It's less specialized by industry than it was historically. Historically, there was a commissioner for water, a commissioner for communications. I think the president has tried to be a little more egalitarian about the issue areas.
PUF: So, you could go from natural gas one day to cost allocation for electric the next day?
Martha Guzman Aceves: Yes. I think not the next day, but maybe every couple of years. Right now, I manage a lot of the issues dealing with some of the procurement. We call these recovery accounts. They're huge. They're basically eight billion-dollar accounts where the utilities are reporting on their procurement.
We call those ERRA accounts, they're energy recovery accounts.
PUF: Is it a matter of buying energy?
Martha Guzman Aceves: Not only that. It's a big topic. That's a good chunk of it, though.