Phoenix—On Friday, July 31, 2020, the Arizona Supreme Court in a 6-1 opinion affirmed the Corporation Commission’s constitutional authority to appoint an interim manager for public service companies under the regulatory authority of the Commission.
“This is a historic day for the citizens of Pinal County and the state of Arizona,” said Corporation Commission Chairman Bob Burns. “The Court has recognized the Commission’s authority to act and to protect the public from utility operations that pose a risk to the public health and safety of Arizonans statewide.”
Commissioner Justin Olson praised the interim manager appointed to Johnson Utilities stating, "Putting in place an interim manager was a decision that the Commission did not take lightly, but it was a necessary measure to protect the public health and safety of the citizens in San Tan Valley. Prior to the Commission's actions, the utility had an unprecedented amount of sewer system overflows and failed to meet peak demand for water in multiple areas of its jurisdiction. The interim manager has turned things around and put Johnson Utilities on a path toward providing consistently safe and reliable public services. With much work still needed, I am very pleased that the court upheld the Commission's critical decision in this matter."
In 2019, Johnson Utilities served approximately 28,392 water customers and 39,230 wastewater customers.
Commissioner LeaMárquez Peterson stated,“This is a monumental decision by the Justices and provides long awaited relief for the people and businesses in San Tan Valley and Pinal County - as well as statewide.”