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How to Participate in PUC Cases

​Different rules about participation apply to rulemakings and contested cases. 

(1) Rulemakings:

When the PUC proposes to adopt, amend, or repeal an administrative rule, the agency allows the public the opportunity to participate in two ways.  First, the PUC allows persons to submit written comments on the proposal.  Second, the PUC generally holds a hearing to allow persons to provide oral comment before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ).

Any member of the public may submit written or oral comments before the deadline specified in the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking or Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Hearing.  All comments received will be included in the official rulemaking record, and written comments will be made available for viewing on the PUC's website in eDockets.  The PUC will consider all comments in deciding whether to adopt the proposed rule changes.

(2) Contested Cases:

Contested cases have more restrictions on participation because they involve the adjudication of legal rights and privileges.  Case participants are called "parties" and have the right to fully participate in the case, such as the ability to present testimony, cross-examine other parties, file briefs, and request judicial review of Commission orders.  A party also receives copies of the filings submitted by other parties to the Commission or ALJ.  Similarly, a party must serve copies of its own submissions on other parties.

Commission Staff and parties named in the pleading initiating Commission action are original parties and need not petition to intervene.  Under ORS 77​4.180​, the Citizens' Utility Board of Oregon (CUB) has a right to intervene simply by filing a notice.

Any other person may intervene to become a party to a proceeding with a showing of sufficient interest.  The requirements for petitions to intervene are found in OAR 860-001-0300.  The Commission allows intervention if the petitioner has sufficient interest in the proceeding and the petitioner's appearance and participation will not unreasonably broaden the issues, burden the record, or unreasonably delay the proceedings.  The Commission may impose appropriate conditions on any intervenor's participation in the proceedings, such as restricting access to confidential information.  Sample forms to petition to intervene may be found here.

Service Lists

The Hearings Division maintains an official service list for each PUC case and posts the service lists on the PUC's website in eDockets.  For contested cases, the service list identifies representatives for each party. A party must designate at least one representative to receive service, and may identify no more than three representatives.  See OAR 860-001-0180.

For rulemaking dockets, the service list identifies all participants; that is, all person filing comments, attending workshops, or requesting to be on the rulemaking service list.

NOTE:  Our service lists are placed on the Internet.  Thus, a party's or rulemaking participant's email and mailing address will be on the Internet and available to the general public.

Information for Parties in Contested Cases