News Release

Commissioner Lea Márquez Peterson Asks APS, Parties to Pending APS Rate Case: “How Can We Achieve 9 Cents per Kilowatt-Hour for Arizona?"

For Immediate Release | 11-17-20

Media Contact | Daniel Schwiebert

Direct | 602-542-3847

E-Mail | DPSchwiebert@azcc.gov

 

 

REMOTELY FROM TUCSON – In a letter issued to Arizona Public Service Company and intervenors on Tuesday, Arizona Corporation Commissioner Lea Márquez Peterson is asking parties to the company’s pending rate case to work together to develop a plan that will decrease retail electric rates for the company.

 

The letter identifies eight areas of cost reduction, plus the establishment of performance incentive mechanisms, that she wants parties to address in the coming months to help the state achieve an average retail electric rate of 9 cents per kilowatt-hour.

 

“Current rates in Arizona are around 13 to 14 cents per kilowatt-hour,” said Márquez Peterson. “Other states that we compete with for jobs and economic opportunities have average retail electric rates around 9, 10, and 11 cents per kilowatt-hour,” she said.

 

“A well thought out and concerted effort to decrease rates will be absolutely necessary if we’re going to provide a meaningful catalyst for our citizens and economy to take off in the next five to ten years."

 

“After studying the past difficulties and criticisms we’ve heard of APS, I think it’s time we re-think the way we’ve done things at the Commission and look at the best practices that can help us achieve the most favorable results for ratepayers."

 

“My request is about helping Arizonans decrease their cost of living, while making retail electric rates in Arizona more competitive with other states so we can attract new businesses and continue to grow our economy. We’re looking for APS to not only be a good neighbor for our communities, but also be as prudent as possible. We’re looking for APS to explore every avenue for a rate decrease."

 

“With new leadership at the helm of APS, I am optimistic about what we can achieve when we work together."

 

“This will give APS an opportunity to demonstrate its new corporate philosophy and focus on the customer."

 

Comments and suggestions may be sent to the Commission by filing in the docket at efiling.azcc.gov, referencing Docket No. E-01345A-19-0236.

 

To view Commissioner Márquez Peterson’s letter to APS and parties, click here.

 

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About Commissioner Lea Márquez Peterson, MBA, IOM:

Commissioner Lea Márquez Peterson was elected to the Arizona Corporation Commission in November 2020. She is the first Latina to serve in a statewide seat in the state of Arizona and the first Commissioner to propose a 100 percent zero-carbon energy goal for the state.

The only Commissioner not based in Maricopa County, Commissioner Márquez Peterson has been a champion for rural Arizona and small business. Lea has been an entrepreneur in Southern Arizona for many years and served as the President/ CEO of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber from 2009 until November of 2018. The Tucson Hispanic Chamber serves the business community in the bilingual, bi-cultural region of the Arizona-Sonora border and was recognized as the Hispanic Chamber of the Year in 2013 by the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Lea joined the national Hispanics in Energy organization in July 2019.

Prior to her leadership at the Chamber, she previously served as the Executive Director for Greater Tucson Leadership (GTL) from 2005 to 2009 and owned and operated a Business Brokerage Firm from 2005 to 2009 and a chain of six gasoline stations / convenience stores with 50 employees from 1998 to 2005 in the Tucson region.

As Commissioner, Lea has voted to refund $40 million to customers of APS, TEP, and UNSE, eliminate additional subsidies and surcharges on customers' bills, and provide as much relief to vulnerable populations as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic. She has also supported policies that will help to develop new energy technologies, while allowing competition and innovation to drive the Commission's decisions, helping to keep utility rates affordable for Arizona families.

Lea has been appointed to serve on the Arizona Judicial Council, which advises the Arizona Supreme Court and the Arizona Finance Authority, the state's bonding authority. She chairs the Board of Directors of Carondelet's St Mary's and St Joseph's Hospitals in Tucson and is the former Chair of the Pima Association of Governments' Economic Vitality Committee. She serves on the Boards of the University of Arizona Foundation and the Pima County Workforce Investment Board and is the President of the National Association of Women Business Owners in Tucson. She also serves on the national Small Business Development Council advisory board for the U.S Small Business Administration.

She received her undergraduate degrees in Marketing and Entrepreneurship from the University of Arizona, and her Master of Business Administration from Pepperdine University. She resides in Tucson and is married with two children.

Twitter: @LeaPeterson
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/leamarquezpeterson/

The Arizona Corporation Commission was established by the state's constitution to regulate public utilities and business incorporation. The Corporation Commission is Arizona's co-equal, fourth branch of government. The five Commissioners elected to the Corporation Commission oversee executive, legislative, and judicial proceedings on behalf of Arizonans when it comes to their water, electricity, telephone, and natural gas resources as well as the regulation of securities, pipeline, and railroad safety. To learn more about the Arizona Corporation Commission and its Commissioners, visit http://azcc.gov.

 

 


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