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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Dusty Johnson Plugs in PUC Re-Election Campaign

Dusty Johnson gives his local paper the scoop, telling Seth Tupper he's running for re-election to the Public Utilities Commission next year. Among the lines Johnson has ready for the run:
  • On TransCanada's Keystone pipelines: "I’m not a cheerleader for that kind of development, but I do want to make sure it gets done right if it’s going to get done.... Those are hard decisions, and I think we’ve done a good job. But managing growth is always difficult.”
  • On wind power, Johnson notes that by the end of his second term, South Dakota will have 15 times more wind-energy development than it did when he started the job back in 2005 (that's impressive!).
  • On sticking with this job instead of seeking higher office: Johnson says he doesn't want to spend more time away from his family (even I say a big mushy aaawwww! to that). Besides, he likes his job: "Energy issues are a really big deal in this country right now. I’ve got a job that is very interesting and that I love, and that I feel has a big impact on people’s lives."
And don't think the PUC race will be the undercard event no one pays attention to. Commissioner Johnson thinks he won't be the only one running: “Because this has been a front-row seat to the energy issues that have been so hot, particularly in the last few years, a lot of people view this as a job where you can make a big difference.”

Let's hope he's right: a vigorously fought campaign for PUC would bring to the fore a valuable discussion about wind power, TransCanada, Big Stone II, and the energy future of our state and our nation.

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