Gov. Rick Scott has kept intact the Public Service Commission that he inherited from his predecessor, former Gov. Charlie Crist, and on Friday reappointed Art Graham and Ron Brisé to another four-year term rather than choose newcomers offered up to him by the legislatively-controlled nominating commission.
Graham, 49, of Jacksonville Beach, previously served as a city councilman for the City of Jacksonville Beach. Brisé, 39, is a former state legislator from Miami and the current chair of the Florida Public Service Commission. He currently serves as a board member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners.
Graham and Brisé were chosen by Crist from a list of nominees to replace one of two Crist appointees that failed to receive Senate confirmation after they rejected a controversial rate increase sought by Florida Power & Light. Scott reaffirmed their appointments and the Senate confirmed them.
Since then, both Graham and Brisé have joined with the rest of the PSC to unanimously approve a four-year settlement that allows FPL to raise its rates in 2013, 2014 and 2016.
Graham was briefly scolded by the Florida Senate committee that confirmed his appointment in 2011 for having drinks in a hotel lobby with the executive and lawyer from Aqua Utilities after the water company had filed a rate case before the PSC.
During his first term, Graham served as chairman of the PSC and, shortly after he was confirmed by the Senate, orchestrated the replacement of the PSC's then executive director, Timothy Devlin, who resigned at Graham's request.