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Ways to Simplify and Reduce Regulatory Processing
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With the State of Arizona facing the prospect of massive budget deficits over the next two fiscal years, lawmakers and stakeholders are now engaged in an historic effort to identify solutions to this growing problem.  Suggestions for closing the budget gap are being proposed not only by the Governor and the legislature, but also by citizens, think tanks and even our universities. ASU President Michael Crow, for instance, recently offered the services of ASU’s researchers and academicians to state agencies to assist in finding ways to deal with resource shortfalls.  The general idea is to identify ways agencies can serve the public in difficult fiscal times without decimating the programs essential to Arizona’s future.

AIC has added its voice to the range of ideas for making better use of a limited and shrinking resource base.  In a recently released White Paper we identify 20 ideas for simplifying administrative and regulatory processes at the Arizona Corporation Commission.  The ideas contained in the report range from enabling electronic filings of utility company submissions to altering some ratemaking practices to improve processing efficiencies and reduce the incidence of rate filings.  The White Paper also provides recommendations for streamlined treatment of member-owned electric cooperatives and the 400 privately-owned small water companies regulated by the ACC. 

The ideas could save hundreds of person hours of ACC staff time each year and substantially lower the regulatory costs incurred by the utility companies.  The measures could be implemented without compromising the ACC’s ability to protect the public interest in an open and transparent manner.  Reducing regulatory overhead at the ACC would free-up ACC resources for other critical matters, like ensuring appropriate and adequate infrastructure to meet Arizona’s growing needs.

AIC encourages the ACC to give serious consideration to streamlining its administrative and regulatory processes.  We hope Commissioners find our ideas helpful, and we stand ready to participate and assist in any way we can.

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Gary Yaquinto, AIC President