Voter's Guide, 2020 Fall Elections, Louisiana
Position Public Service Commission, District 1
NameJohn Francis Schwegmann

Campaign Information

Campaign Web Sitehttp://N/A

Bio Information

Party AffiliationNO PARTY
Present Employer / positionMANAGEMENT
Length of residence in Jurisdiction74 YEARS
Prior elected and appointed positionsLOUISIANA PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION----1980 TILL 1996
Civic involvement and affiliationsUNITED STATES COAST GUARD----1967-1973
Served on the Board of Trustees of Loyola University---6 year term
Served on the Board of Directors of Magnolia School for the Mentally Handicapped
Served on the Board of Directors of 'Louise Davis' School for the Mentally Handicapped
Served on the Board of Directors of 'Food Marketing Institute'---World Wide Organization for the Super Market Industry

Questions specific to the position

1. What goals do you want to accomplish as a Public Service Commissioner? First and foremost is to have a regulatory commission that is not owned and controlled by the very same utility interests that the commission is elected to regulate and set rates for. It is essential for the protection of the rate payor for their elected official to be independent of financial influence flowing from those companies and their executives that are being regulated. It's a disgrace that our state legislature has not seen fit to pass a law banning the practice of utility interests directing large sums of money to regulators. All else pales in comparison to the need to end the stench of corruption on the part of regulators. How can the public have any confidence in the integrity of the votes cast by the commissioners when they are receiving large sums of money from the very same utilities that come before the commission seeking commission approval. I served for almost 16 years on the La. Public Service Commission and I never accepted any financial contributions from any utilities nor their executives. I also gave free rent to the State of Louisiana for my Commission office. Furthermore, I donated my salary to non profits benefiting the mentally handicapped. Unlike many, I sought no personal gain from holding elective office.
2. Now that working from home and virtual classrooms have become normalized, in what ways would you expedite efficient, high speed access to the internet for all Louisiana residents, regardless of geographic location or neighborhood demographics? I will do my very best with a balance of cost vs. reward.
3. What priority will you give renewable energy resources, such as energy efficiency programs and solar and wind installations, in the mix of energy supply for customers? Do you plan to promote any? Discuss with regard to residential and large commercial installations. As you may know, there is a rift between the utilities and those that want support for renewable energy sources. There are times when we need to make investments that may not be economical on day one but are seen as long term wise decisions that are best in the long term. Experts have been saying for a long time that mankind is ruining our planet. We must promote and plan for future generations. Renewable energy sources must be in the mix.
4. Should the Public Service Commission have a major role to play in requiring companies to ensure storm-hardened transmission lines? We should make every reasonable attempt to lesson the destruction that comes from storm damage. It will also save lives. Fallen power lines can kill. We should not forget the added danger to personnel that have to make repairs and the cost of replacing equipment.