Arizona public utility commissioner writes letters to McSally, Sinema supporting USMCA

Commissioner Lea Márquez Peterson.
Commissioner Lea Márquez Peterson.

Arizona Corporation Commissioner Lea Márquez Peterson wrote identical letters to United States Sens. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., and Martha McSally, R-Ariz., requesting they work with their colleagues to ratify the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement as soon as possible.

Gov. Doug Ducey appointed Márquez Peterson to the Arizona Corporation Commission, which regulates public utilities statewide, in May 2019. She is the first Latina to serve in a statewide office in Arizona.

“As a member of the Arizona Corporation Commission, I have the unique opportunity to comment on the USMCA from the perspective of a public utility regulator and the utilities and utility customers we represent,” Márquez Peterson wrote in the letters.

“From this perspective, I see the USMCA as providing net benefits for all signatories in the areas of energy, water, and telecommunications policy, which complement and support our push for a cleaner and more interconnected economy.”

Márquez Peterson said she specifically supported the USMCA’s promotion of:

  • Energy, including zero-tariff energy trade and the ability to share electricity across the border;
  • Telecommunications, including full access to public and major suppliers’ networks;
  • Electric vehicles, with incentives to encourage companies to build in Arizona;
  • Utility infrastructure;
  • Air quality, including enforcement of existing environmental laws to improve air quality in major metropolitan and rural areas across North America; and
  • Water, including addressing land- and sea-based pollution, promoting waste management infrastructure and protecting Arizona’s natural water resources.

“As we begin to discuss building a more robust and interconnected regional grid in the west, we will necessarily need to consider how we connect and interact with our clean energy customers and suppliers on both sides of the Arizona-Sonora border,” Márquez Peterson said.

“More access to [electric] transmission infrastructure between these two partners will provide benefits and clean energy opportunities for everyone, while promotion of electric vehicles charging and production by manufacturers and suppliers will help both neighbors as they strive to achieve shared air quality goals across the region,” she said.

Before her appointment, Márquez Peterson served as president and CEO of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce for almost a decade. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce recognized the Tucson Hispanic Chamber as the “Hispanic Chamber of the Year” in 2013, under Márquez Peterson’s leadership.

To view the letter to Sinema, click here.

To view the letter to McSally, click here.

Graham Bosch

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