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News Release
 
Commission Chairman to Step Down in Early Spring
 
Nov. 12, 2009 (2009-018)
 
Contacts:  Lee Beyer, Chairman, 503 378-6611; Ray Baum, Commissioner, 503 378-6611; John Savage, Commissioner, 503 378-6611; Bob Valdez, Public Affairs Specialist, 503 378-8962
 
Salem, OR.  Today Oregon Public Utility Commission Chairman Lee Beyer announced he will be stepping down this spring bringing to a close his service on the Commission that began in 2001 following his appointment by Gov. John Kitzhaber.
 
Gov. Kulongoski elevated Beyer to chairman in 2003. The chairman serves as the agency’s chief executive.
 
Prior to his appointment on the three-member Commission, the 61-year old Beyer served as the State Senator from District 6.
 
“This decision was not easy.  I really have enjoyed working at the Commission resolving complicated issues for the benefit of ratepayers,” Beyer said.
 
During his time on the Commission Beyer helped guide the Commission through an energy crisis that saw electric and natural gas prices skyrocket, the meltdown of the Enron Corporation and the Commission rejection of a bid by the private equity Texas Pacific Group (TPG) to buy Portland General Electric.
 
Beyer will seek election to the Oregon State Senate to replace State Senator Bill
Morrisette, who has decided not to seek re-election. “One has to grab opportunities when they become available, not necessarily when you would like them to occur” Beyer added. 
 
Beyer’s current four-year term expires in March 2012.
 
He represents the Commission as a member of:   the NARUC Electricity Committee, the Western State’s Council of Utility Commissioner’s Natural Gas Committee, the Committee on Regional Electricity Coordination (CREPC), as a director of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council and a member of the Electric Power Research Institute advisory council.
 
Prior to his appointment to the Commission, Chairman Beyer worked professionally for over 25 years in the business and industrial development field.   During this time, he also served for over 10 years in the Oregon Legislature, serving in the Senate and House of Representatives, as well as 6 years on the Springfield City Council.   Beyer has also served on a wide variety of state, community, and private boards and committees.
 
Chairman Beyer and his spouse, Representative Terry Beyer, have three grown children and live in Springfield.
 
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