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CONTACT: Patricia Van Gerpen, phone (605) 773-3201

PUC makes public access easier

The South Dakota Public Utilities Commission announces a new initiative to make it easier for the public and the utility industry to get information about the work the commission does. Information about cases filed with the commission for decision-making and web casting of commission meetings is now available through the PUC Web site at

The next PUC ad hoc meeting will be accessible via an Internet link beginning at 10 a.m. CDT on April 4 in Pierre. The PUC meets again on April 12 at 10:30 a.m. CDT.

"Opening the doors of the PUC has been a goal of mine since I joined the commission," commented PUC Chairman Gary Hanson. "I believe that utilizing the full potential of the Internet to make information about our cases and meetings readily available will give us opportunity for greater interaction with the public and our utilities."

By visiting the PUC Web site, the public will see much of the information that is reviewed by the commissioners and staff working on cases. They will also be able to listen to commission meetings and hearings as they are being conducted. Once commission meetings are adjourned, they will be archived on the site.

"Public input is essential to good decision making," said Vice Chairman Bob Sahr. "South Dakota consumers now have easier access to important cases affecting their phone, electricity and gas service and rates."

Information about current and past cases is accessible by clicking on the "Commission Actions" tab located near the top of the PUC's home page. From there, go to the year and subject of interest to gain access to what has been filed as public information on any case since 1997.

Live access to PUC meetings is achieved by using the appropriately dated link for the meeting, located on the PUC home page.  Archived meetings are also under the "Commission Actions" tab.

"We are already hearing from folks who have used our Web links during the trial phase to access this information," added Commissioner Dusty Johnson. "They appreciate the convenience of being able to see information filed with the PUC in a nearly real-time basis and being able to listen to our meetings without having to be in Pierre."

If you have questions about the PUC's Web cast or a particular case, please call the PUC at 1 (800) 332-1782 or e-mail

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