Colorado: Governor Polis Directs PUC to Pursue Reforms that Helps Customers, and Increase Transparency, Communication, and Accountability from Xcel Energy and other Utilities

DENVER ~ In the aftermath of a high-force wind storm that hit Colorado on April 6, 2024, Governor Jared Polis expressed his frustration with Xcel Energy's handling of the situation. In a letter addressed to the company, Governor Polis shared his disappointment and disappointment on behalf of many Coloradans who were impacted by Xcel's decision to proactively cut power and slow down restoration efforts.

The governor acknowledged the hard work of frontline workers who worked tirelessly to restore power in areas affected by the storm. However, he also highlighted the lack of communication and transparency from Xcel, which left many customers in the dark about when their power would be restored.

Governor Polis called for reforms to Xcel's process to ensure that future decisions are not made without proper cost analysis, customer communication, and transparency. He directed the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to seek these reforms in order to protect customers in case of future Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPS).

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One of the key reforms proposed by Governor Polis is ensuring that PSPS decisions are made in the best interest of Coloradans. This includes adequate communication that allows individuals and businesses to prepare for potential power outages, especially for vulnerable members of the community.

The governor also emphasized the need for timely and relevant information about outage locations, support services, and expected restoration timelines. He called for updated maps that provide transparency on anticipated or current outages and service restoration activities.

In addition, Governor Polis has requested an investigation into how Xcel fell short in informing and protecting customers during the public safety power shutoff. The investigation will also look into strategies that can improve operations in the future.

The governor's letter to Xcel Energy Colorado serves as a reminder that companies have a responsibility to their customers during times of crisis. It is crucial for them to prioritize effective communication and transparency in order to minimize disruptions and protect those who rely on their services.

Filed Under: Government, State

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