Jan 24, 2012 - Claremont, Calif. -
His selection will become official once confirmed by the city council. Once confirmed, Pickel will review and scrutinize proposed rate hikes by the city’s Department of Water and Power (DWP).
“He has deep utility expertise as well as an understanding of economics,” search committee member Sandra Itkoff, vice president of strategy for Chinese electric car company BYD America, told the L.A. Times.
Pickel has more than 30 years experience in the gas and electric industries in the U.S. and abroad. He co-authored the first academic paper on electricity real-time pricing and its implications for electricity deregulation. His background includes evaluating energy supply portfolios—including cost and risk management options—for commercial, industrial and governmental electricity and gas users. He currently serves as president of the Los Angeles-based Wilshire Energy Consulting Group, Inc.
The ratepayer advocate position was created last March when Los Angeles voters passed a charter amendment, which also established an Office of Public Accountability. The action came after a series of rate increases and a battle over rate hikes between the DWP and the city council.
Media Contact: Judy Augsburger