Peterman steps down from the CPUC

by Steve Blum • ,

The California Public Utilities Commission will have at least one new member next year. At yesterday’s meeting, commissioner Carla Peterman announced she will not be back…

The end of the year marks the end of my term on the CPUC. I wanted to share that I’m not seeking reappointment. This has been – is – an amazing job. It’s been a true privilege to serve as a public utilities commissioner. I will say many nice things about all of you in a future meeting, but I wanted to let you know and to say that me and my team are going to working incredibly hard with all of you to bring forward the decisions for commission to consider by the end of the year. So I appreciate your support in that.

Just so you don’t have to ask, no I do not know what I’m doing next year. It’s fair to say it’s not retirement, especially coming off eight years of government salary. But regardless of what it’ll be, I’m sure we’ll have an opportunity to work together because I am truly committed to the mission of this agency and continuing to collaborate with all of you in the days to come. So thank you.

Governor Jerry Brown appointed Peterman to the CPUC at the end of 2012, and she began her six year term in January 2013.

The big question now is who will appoint her replacement. Brown’s term ends this year, and he could still nominate someone. Or he could leave it to his successor. Based on every poll I’ve seen, that’s almost certainly going to be fellow democrat Gavin Newsom. Anything is possible, but it would take an unprecedented political earthquake for republican John Cox to win.

The change of administrations will be interesting to watch. My guess is that Brown will defer many – probably most – decisions to Newsom, but will also find comfortable landing spots for close aides. Which he has done in his last three CPUC appointments: president Michael Picker and commissioner Clifford Rechtschaffen are both long time friends, and commissioner Martha Guzman Aceves was a key staffer in his office.