On Wednesday, July 17, hundreds of interested parties crowded into the Alabama Public Service Commission’s meeting room, lobby, and overflow room to hear presentations and witnesses from Alabama Power and their allies and organizations like GASP who believe that Alabama Power’s return on equity (ROE) is too high and that the PSC process should be more transparent and friendly to the public. The meeting lasted nearly 12 hours, going past 8 p.m. Members of the public were allowed to speak and below are remarks made by Executive Director Stacie Propst. Video of Dr. Propst’s expanded statement is below starting at 8:20.
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I am the Executive Director of GASP and an Alabama Power customer. Since everyone introduces themselves with their biography, here is mine: I am also an Alabama native. Born in Tuscaloosa, where I returned for my undergraduate degree. I have my doctorate from UAB where I did medical research.
By training, I am a scientist. I rely on data . . . evidence. We came into this process looking for just that. Instead, the gist of these proceedings seems to be “don’t worry, trust us.” That’s simply no longer sufficient. Frankly, it’s difficult to believe how this situation has been tolerated for so long.
Alabama Power is a monopoly that requires proper oversight of the government on behalf of its citizens. By any rational measure, Alabama Power’s profits are higher than they should be.