The Minnesota Office of Legislative Auditor has released five of the six program evaluations that were expected around the beginning of the year; the only one outstanding is the report on the Public Utilities Commission’s (PUC’s) Public Engagement Processes. Continue reading
Minnesota Legislative Audit Commission
Legislative Audit Commission Moves Forward on Review of PUC Public Engagement Process
Laura Schwartz, program evaluation manager for the Legislative Audit Commission, will lead the team reviewing the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission’s (PUC’s) public engagement process. That is one of five research topics the Audit Commission approved this year.
It will investigate three questions, according to the Commission’s one-page summary:
- What are the PUC’s rules for public participation?
- To what extent does the PUC enforce these rules appropriately and consistently?
- How do the PUC’s rules affect the extent to which the public can participate in the Commission’s decision-making process?
State to Audit PUC’s Flawed Public Engagement Process
The Minnesota Legislative Audit Commission voted this morning to review the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission’s (PUC’s) public engagement process, a process that came under heavy criticism during its recent handling of the Enbridge Line 3 crude oil pipeline case.
(For details, see: PUC Staff Oversteps Authority, Shows Bias Against Pipeline Resisters.)
Legislative Audit Commission Chair Rep. Rick Hansen said there was bipartisan support for the PUC review. “It is somewhat unique, because it’s both public participation but it’s also commerce, energy, environment all kind of wrapped together,” he said after the meeting. “It’s a good and timely topic.” Continue reading
PUC Could Get Needed Scrutiny from the Legislative Audit Commission
Your voice is needed now to get more accountability at the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) for its poor public engagement process. It’s particularly important given the flawed process and disrespect shown towards opponents of the proposed Enbridge Line 3 crude oil pipeline through northern Minnesota.
Each year, the Minnesota Legislative Audit Commission chooses a small number of research topics to make sure state agencies and programs are well run, are accountable and have appropriate legislative oversight. The Commission has a list of 10 possible research topics for the coming year and a review of the PUC public engagement process is one of the possible topics. This Friday, the Commission will choose the five to get done.
The window of influence is closing quickly, but here is how you can get engaged and make the PUC review a priority. Continue reading