Arizona Panel Moving To Restrict Disconnections By Utilities

Apr 19, 2021

Power lines in North Bonneville, Washington.
Credit Associated Press

A 3-2 vote by the Arizona Corporation Commission puts the regulatory panel on course to further restrict utility shut-offs for nonpayment during extreme heat and under other conditions. 

The commission’s 3-2 vote Wednesday night capped 16 hours of open meetings over two days on the issue and stemmed from the 2018 death of a 72-year-old customer of Arizona Public Service Co. the Arizona Capitol Times reported.

Republican Lea Marquez Peterson joined Democrats Anna Tovar and Sandra Kennedy in voting to set the standard for banning utility shut-offs when the outside temperature reaches 95 degrees. Republicans Justin Olson and Jim O’Connor voted against the change.

In the works for nearly two years, the new rules still must go through a full rulemaking process that includes a formal vote expected in the fall.

In the meantime, utilities will still follow temporary rules that ban shut-offs for nonpayment between June 1 and Oct. 15.