Information and Perspective by Warren Woodward
Sedona, Arizona ~ September 16, 2015
In addition to Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) commissioner (and Chair) Susan Smith being a lobbyist, it was just revealed by the Arizona Republic newspaper that ACC Commissioner Bob Burns is one too.
Burns claims it’s all a mistake, that he thought he had resigned. But Tom Ryan, the attorney who recently filed a complaint against Smith with the Arizona Attorney General, was quoted by the Republic thus:
“That doesn’t get him out of hot water,” he said of the resignation. “It just moves him to another part of the hot tub. You can’t do these things while running for office.“
For years I have detailed how corrupt the Arizona Corporation Commission is. On the “smart” meter issue since 2011, there was no other explanation for the commissioners willful blindness to facts and unrelenting push of a corporate agenda. Yes, incompetence is definitely a factor also at the ACC, and it could be argued that anyone who is corrupt must be incompetent to think they will not be outed.
The problem in Arizona (and elsewhere) is that outing does not necessarily mean consequences. So far for example, the ACC commissioners have been able to get away with their corruption and lawlessness despite it being news.
Our Attorney General’s office is useless. It has supposedly been investigating the ACC for months but how they can do that without issuing a single search warrant?
So, to recap:
- We have former commissioners Gary Pierce and Brenda Burns implicated in corruption and under investigation by the Attorney General.
- That investigation also involves ACC Executive Director Jodi Jerich and commissioner Bob Stump. Stump actually destroyed state property (his cell phone) in what looks to many as evidence destruction. (Note to Attorney General: Please supply a list of state property anyone can destroy without consequences. Is it more than just cell phones?)
- According to state law, commissioners Smith and Burns should not even be commissioners because they are lobbyists. But there they are.
- Who does that leave? Oh right, commissioners Tom Forese and Doug Little who were elected with $3.2 million in campaign support widely believed to be from APS. But they aren’t lobbyists. Really they aren’t.