Part I contains the analysis of existing law. We review the statutes and regulations governing ex parte communications before the CPUC, examine corresponding laws of other jurisdictions, and compare the CPUC statutes and regulations with those of the other jurisdictions. In Part II we examine actual ex parte practices before the CPUC. Based on data obtained from notices filed on the Commission’s website by parties to rate-setting cases, we provide a quantitative characterization of the extent and nature of noticed ex parte communications over the past roughly 22 years. We then place ex parte communications within the context of the CPUC’s proceedings. Part III provides the results of an interview process we undertook to hear the experiences and opinions of people with a stake or an interest in CPUC decision-making, including representatives of regulated utilities, intervenor groups who generally (but not always) appear in CPUC rate-setting cases in opposition to the positions of utilities, companies and industry groups who generally oppose specific utilities’ positions, legislators and legislative staff, public critics of CPUC ex parte practices, CPUC staff (administrative law judges (ALJs), attorneys, and technical staff), and the CPUC Commissioners and their staffs. Then, in Part IV, we present our analysis of this information and our recommendations for changes to statutes, CPUC rules, and Commission practices.
Michael J. Strumwasser, Beverly Grossman Palmer, and Dale K. Larson,
Report to the California Public Utilities Commission
Regarding Ex Parte Communications and Related
36 J. Nat’l Ass’n Admin. L. Judiciary
Available at: https://digitalcommons.pepperdine.edu/naalj/vol36/iss1/5