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Commissioner appointment process

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) is comprised of five commissioners appointed to rotating, five-year terms by the governor. Terms typically begin in April. One seat on the Commission becomes available each year, and any Ohioan who is not employed by a public utility and does not have a financial interest in a public utility can apply for an open seat.

The governor’s selection is made from a list of names submitted by the PUCO Nominating Council, a broad-based 12-member panel charged with screening candidates for the position of commissioner. By law, the Nominating Council is comprised of:

  • The chair of the Consumers' Counsel Governing Board,
  • The president of the Accountancy Board of Ohio,
  • The chair of the State Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Surveyors,
  • The president of the Ohio State Bar Association,
  • The president of the Ohio Municipal League,
  • The director of the Ohio Development Services Agency, and
  • Appointees of the Ohio Department on Aging, the president of the Ohio Senate, the speaker of the Ohio House and the governor. The governor's three appointees represent the utility industry, the business community and organized labor.

After considering the resumes of all applicants, the Nominating Council narrows the list to those most qualified for the position. The Nominating Council interviews these applicants and recommends a list of four finalists to the governor for consideration. The governor has 30 days to either appoint a commissioner from the list or request a new list of four names from the Nominating Council. The governor's appointment is subject to confirmation by the Ohio Senate.