The Arizona Corporation Commission serves the people, not corporate interests.
As designed in Article 15 of the Arizona State Constitution in the Progressive Era, the intent of the Commission was to protect the health, safety, and welfare of Arizonians. They oversee all business in the State, foreign and domestic, regulate all non-municipal utilities and rates, the safety of railroads, pipelines, and oversee the securities marketplace and brokers that sell those products.
The founders wrote, in Article 15, the Commissioners were to be elected by the people of Arizona, to serve the people, not appointed by the Governor.
Unfortunately, as noted in previous pieces, the Commission has been populated by several commissioners who are recipients of Dark Money interests whose only purpose is to serve the very industries that the State Constitution designed the Commission to safeguard against.
In 2020, there are three openings on the Corporation Commission.
Three Democrats; Shea Stanfield, Anna Tovar, and Bill Mundel are running for three of the open slots.
If elected, they will join Sandra Kennedy and create a Democratic Majority on the Commission that will again serve the people’s interests.
Teacher, sustainability activist, and former member of the Cave Creek Town Council Shea Stanfield graciously took the time to again discuss her candidacy for the Arizona Corporation Commission.
The questions and her responses are below.
1) What are the three reasons the voters should pick you for the Arizona Corporation Commission?
“The voters need to know that I will be their voice on the ACC.”
“I have been in Arizona since 1957, I know, along with many other long term residents, what it was like to have clean air to breathe and open space, within our neighborhoods free of chemicals and toxins. Unfortunately, this has all changed with local governments turning a blind eye to responsible development and traffic movement as well as regulating what industry was up to in their manufacturing practices.”
“Fortunately, I was raised in a family with parents in public health and education, and received the message early it was important to build a better community through being of service to others. My path was to attend ASU for my Bachelors and Masters in Education and go to work in the Public Schools. At the same time, I became engaged in urban land preservation movements in the two communities I lived and worked. This resulted in the McDowell Mountain Regional Park and the Spur Cross Conservation area. I served my community on the Cave Creek Town Council for two terms during this time.”
“Finally, I am tired of the lack of positive action on climate and environmental issues, from our State and local governments. Unless we have a majority of elected officials who will make our health, safety, and welfare a priority, we will continue to lose our collective quality of life. So, I decided, in March 2019, with three of the five seats open on the ACC open, I needed to step-up for the residents of this State. The Arizona Corporation Commission is on the frontline of renewal. Energy policy, this is where I can bring my collective life experience to making a difference for all Arizonians.”
2) What are at least three ways any of your opponents have failed the Arizona Corporation Commission
“On the whole, the Republican party has no track record on moving renewable
energy forward or in steps to zero out carbon emissions. Their intent is to
destroy the environment with supporting Outer Continental Shelf energy
development, digging in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, mining in the
Grand Canyon and fracking on other protected first nations and federal lands.”
3) What are at least three issues you feel are important to pursue if elected to the Arizona Corporation Commission?
“The first is to return the ACC to the people of Arizona, where it belongs. When the founders were writing the Constitution for the State in the early 1900s they specifically created the Corporation Commission, under Article 15 of the Constitution, with broad responsibilities for oversight in the areas of business, financial products, utilities, pipeline safety, not just a Utilities Commission as many other States have. They wrote into the Constitution the commissioners were to represent the people of Arizona, therefore, they are elected at large. (Not appointed by the Governor) Unfortunately, with the introduction of outside dark money interests buying, so-called regulators, the majority of the commissioners, the last number of election cycles serve monopoly big money interests.”
“Second, the focus is to update and adapt the Arizona Corporation Commission’s Energy Rules / Renewable Energy Standards and Tariff Rules (REST) originally adopted in 2006, and systematically weakened by Republican Majority commissions since then. I would also update the clean energy portfolio of the Commission.”
“Expand the education of What is the Corporation Commission to residents all over the State. As Arizonians come to understand the power this fourth Department of Arizona’s government has in and over their family’s lives, they will be empowered to pay closer attention, ask more questions, monitor the effects in their own lives, and inform and organize others to make sure the ACC is their representative working for them.”
4) Is there anything else you want voters to know about you and your candidacy?
“I am running as part of the SolarTeam2020 with Bill Mundell and Anna Tovar. There are three (3) seats, out of five (5) open on the Arizona Corporation Commission, we MUST take all three. The results will give us four (4)of the five (5) seats on the commission. Commissioner Sandra Kennedy is currently on the commission as the only Democrat. She needs our help to move to build a sustainable future for Arizona. We need your help to make renewable energy a priority for your communities and our State.”
There will be a Clean Elections Debate for the nominees running for the open seats on the Arizona Corporation Commission on Wednesday, September 30, 2020, from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Please watch it to see where the candidates stand on the issues that affect the utilities you use, the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the ground we walk on.
For more information on Ms. Stanfield and her candidacy, please click on her webpage here, her Facebook page here, her interview with Maricopa County School Superintendent Candidate Jeanne Casteen here, and her earlier interview with Blog for Arizona here.
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