Gov. Rick Scott announced late Friday that he is satisfied with the direction of the state’s powerful utility board and re-appointed Tallahassee lawyer Lisa B. Edgar to a third term on the panel.
Edgar, 49, has served on the Florida Public Service Commission since January 2005, when she was appointed by former Gov. Jeb Bush. She urged the governor to give her another four-year term to give the commission continuity in the wake of frequent turnover.
Edgar will now become the third commissioner to serve a three-year term. The job pays $130,000. Others preceding her are former commissioners Gerald Gunter and Terry Deason. In the last four years, Edgar has seen as 16 different commissioners come and go on the panel.
Former Gov. Charlie Crist refused to reappoint two commissioners for being too close to the utilities they regulate, and the Republican-controlled Legislature, at the urging of some of the state’s largest utilities, responded by ousting four of Crist’s appointees because they were perceived as too consumer-oriented.
Scott had been urged to reject Edgar by a Gainesville-based Tea Party group and state Sen. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey, who accused Edgar of favoring the utility industry in rate cases.
The governor rejected those arguments and also passed over three other candidates, former state Rep. Ken Littlefield, Tampa Bay Water official Donald Polmann and Aventura Commissioner Luz Weinberg.