PSC Chairman Ted Thomas to resign Oct. 1

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 1,092 views 

Ted Thomas, chairman of the powerful Arkansas Public Service Commission, has submitted his resignation to Gov. Asa Hutchinson. The former Republican legislator and longtime member of the PSC has been in contentious debates with public utilities over their handling of solar energy.

In his letter to the governor, Thomas said the opportunity had been rewarding but it was time to move on.

“After much thought and careful consideration, I have decided to resign my position, effective October 1, 2022. My work has been very rewarding, but the time is right for me to take a different path,” he said.

Thomas was reappointed to the PSC in May 2021. His term was not to expire until January 2027.

On the utility regulatory panel, Thomas earned a reputation for advancing alternative energy. He often stated that renewable energy was important to the portfolios of traditional energy companies. He also warned that a lack of investment in renewable energy, such as solar and wind power, would be problematic for those companies and their ratepayers.

In February 2021, Thomas told a panel of state lawmakers that Arkansas could be a leader in renewable energy projects, especially solar projects.

“We have something good going. … If we open this up to markets, we win with innovation,” he said.