Elections 2022 debates: Republican candidates for Corporation Commission
June 22, 2022
Republican Candidates Nick Myers, Policy Advisor to Commissioner Justin Olson; Kim Owens, Commissioner on the Arizona Power Authority; and Kevin Thompson, Air Force combat veteran and Mesa City Council member, debate for Corporation Commission. This is not a formal debate, it’s an open exchange of ideas, an opportunity for give and take between candidates for one of the state’s most important offices. As such, interjections and even interruptions are allowed, provided that all sides get a fair shake. The candidates were not provided questions in advance of the debate.
The candidates began the debate by speaking about the main responsibilities of the Corporation Commission and their views on the Commission’s role in the Arizona government.
“I think that the founders of the Arizona constitution were very specific in making (the Corporation Commission) an elected office and not an appointed office so that it would be responsible to the voters like all the other constitutional offices,” Kim Owens said.
The candidates then pivoted to their thoughts on how much authority the Commission has over utility companies and those under them and if that authority has been exceeded.
“The Commission should not be setting policy, that’s the legislative branch, and to some extent, I would say yes, they have exceeded their authority,” Kevin Thompson said.
The debate continued with discussion on the Renewable Energy Standards (RES) and the different implications of where it is, where it has been and where it should be.
“I think, absolutely not, (rates) should not be increased, and as a matter of fact, I think we should probably roll it back,” Nick Myers said.
Ted continued with the candidates throughout the debate discussing different energy subsidies and innovative technology, clean air, campaign donations, rates, state water concerns, and more.