PUC Moves to Require Diversity Reporting by Public Utilities
Published on 12/17/2020
Filed under: Electric Gas Telecommunications Transportation and Safety Water and Wastewater
Diversity Reports to be Mandatory for Major Electric, Natural Gas, Water, Wastewater, and Telecommunications Public Utilities – Building on Current Recommended Reporting Policy Statement
HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today voted 4-0 to begin a rulemaking process that will require regular reporting on diversity programs and efforts by major utilities under the Commission’s jurisdiction.
This rulemaking builds on the recommendations included in the PUC’s recently revised policy statement on diversity, as part of the diversity discussion initiated earlier this year by PUC Chairman Gladys Brown Dutrieuille.
Rulemaking on Diversity Reporting
The Commission is proposing that diversity reporting become mandatory for major jurisdictional utilities providing electric, natural gas, water, wastewater and telecommunications services.
Properly structured, diversity programs can successfully leverage untapped talent pools to help fill these critical jobs. Furthermore, as regulated monopolies, the Commonwealth’s jurisdictional utilities have unique beneficial community relationships which diversity programs have the power to strengthen.
The Commission’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking will be published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and interested parties can submit comments within 45 days of that publication. Comments should be eFiled through the PUC’s eFiling System. Instructions for creating a free eFiling account are available on the PUC website at https://efiling.puc.pa.gov/. Comments containing confidential information should be emailed to Commission Secretary Rosemary Chiavetta at email@example.com rather than eFiled.
In addition to the public comment period, the proposed rulemaking is being submitted to the
Office of the Attorney General, for review as to form and legality, and the Governor’s Budget Office, for review of fiscal impact – and submitted for review and comment by the Pennsylvania Independent Regulatory Review Commission and the Legislative Standing Committees.
Copies of the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking are also being served on all major jurisdictional utilities in the Commonwealth, as well as the parties involved in earlier discussions about updates to the PUC’s policy statement on diversity.
PUC Policy Statement on Diversity at Major Utilities
Today’s action by the Commission follows recent action to update the PUC’s “Statement of Policy on Diversity at Major Jurisdictional Utility Companies” – which was initially adopted in 1995. The enhanced policy statement expanded diversity reporting guidelines to include minorities, women, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ, and veterans. The final version of that policy statement was unanimously approved by the Commission on Dec. 3, 2020.
The revised PUC policy statement on diversity at public utilities reflects the Commonwealth’s diverse citizenship – including minorities, women, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ, and veterans.
Revisions to the PUC Diversity policy statement include:
- Updating the definition of diversity to include minorities, women, veterans, LGBTQ, and the disabled.
- A standardized reporting form with the goal of collecting the following information:
- A copy of any corporate policy committed to improving diversity in the workplace and in the procurement process.
- A description of any training implemented on diversity initiatives in employment and in the contract of goods and services.
- A standardized format to account for diverse employee numbers.
- A description of any diversity recruiting strategies.
- A description of any diversity promotion efforts.
- A description of any diversity retention efforts.
- A brief description of any involvement with organizations promoting diversity.
- A summary of diverse owned businesses the company contracts with for goods and services, including the percentage of dollars spent with diverse-owned businesses versus non-diverse businesses.
About the PUC
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission balances the needs of consumers and utilities; ensures safe and reliable utility service at reasonable rates; protects the public interest; educates consumers to make independent and informed utility choices; furthers economic development; and fosters new technologies and competitive markets in an environmentally sound manner.
Visit the PUC’s website at www.puc.pa.gov for recent news releases and video of select proceedings. You can also follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube. Search for the “Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission” or “PA PUC” on your favorite social media channel for updates on utility issues and other helpful consumer information.
# # #
Docket No.: L-2020-3017284
Learn how to submit a complaint with a public utility. You can also search existing formal complaints.Get Details
Subscribe to Press Releases
Keep track of PUC news and activities with press releases delivered straight to your email inbox.Subscribe
Need More Help?
If you can't find what you're looking for here, please contact the PA Public Utility Commission. Call us at 1-800-692-7380 or contact us online.
Public utility documents available electronically include case dockets, public meeting orders and more.
Filing & Resources
Find utility-related reports, laws and regulations, federal filings, tariffs, procedures and more.
Consumers, utilities and attorneys can save time by submitting documents to the PUC electronically.