FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 18, 2016
Contact: Caitie Butler
(503) 680-6944 firstname.lastname@example.org
Senate Republicans Ask Committee Chair to Call Public Utility Commissioners to Testify on Energy Policy Overhaul
Salem, Ore. - Today, Senate Republicans submitted a letter to Senate Committee on Business and Transportation Chair Senator Lee Beyer (D-Springfield) requesting public testimony from the Oregon Public Utility Commissioners on House Bill 4036-A, an expensive utility mandate secretly negotiated with special interest donors. The bill aims to significantly overhaul Oregon's energy policy at the expense of Oregon utility ratepayers, and Oregonians deserve the chance to hear public testimony from PUC Commissioners who advocate on their behalf and prevent utility monopolies even if the committee needs to issue a subpoena, argued Senate Republicans.
"Shutting out PUC Commissioners - foremost experts on Oregon's energy policy and the effect major changes will have on working Oregon families and small businesses - from the policymaking process for HB 4036-A is unacceptable," said Senator Alan Olsen (R-Canby). "Oregonians deserve to hear from PUC Commissioners about the impacts HB 4036-A will have on the price of energy in Oregon. We request Senator Beyer invite all three commissioners to testify at the next public hearing on HB 4036-A."
Yesterday, Oregonian Reporter Ted Sickinger revealed Oregon Public Utility Commissioners were silenced by Governor Kate Brown's staff during negotiations over the most sweeping change to energy policy in Oregon's history. Commissioners have since expressed outrage publicly over the policymaking process, claiming the measure will cost ratepayers while resulting in zero carbon reduction. Commissioners John Savage, Susan Ackerman, and Stephen Bloom should be invited to provide testimony as HB 4036-A moved through the committee and floor process in the Oregon House.