If the PSC schedules a public hearing session, it will announce the time, date and location in a notice which is mailed to parties and media outlets, and post to the Electronic Records Filing System (ERF). The PSC strives to schedule this session at times and locations convenient to the public. But if you cannot attend the session, a written comment sent by mail, or submitted online has the same weight when considered by Commissioners. The PSC wants to encourage participation at these sessions by making testifying simple and straight forward. The PSC’s Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) supervises the session. The ALJ ensures the hearing is conducted in a fair and orderly manner and that everyone has a chance to voice their opinions. PSC staff also attends these sessions. They are available at all times to answer questions, and shepherd you through the comment process. When you arrive at the hearing, PSC staff will provide you with an appearance slip. Simply fill out the slip with your name and contact information. Check the box on the slip that indicates you wish to speak and hand it back to PSC Staff. If you do not wish to speak but instead wish to submit a comment in writing, leave the box unchecked and fill your comment in on the lines provided at the bottom and opposite side of the page. Then hand your slip back to PSC Staff. For an on-line copy of an appearance slip, see
Appearance Slip-Public you may print this slip and fill it out before you arrive at the session. If you indicated that you wish to speak PSC Staff will deliver your slip to the ALJ. The ALJ will call upon speakers in the order in which slips are received. When the ALJ calls your name you may approach the witness seat where the ALJ will swear you in, and ask you to state your name and address. Then you may begin your statement. Please speak clearly and at a steady rate so your statement can be accurately recorded, or heard by the court reporter. Sometimes the ALJ will ask a question to help ensure your testimony is clear. The PSC is looking for facts, opinions, concerns, and ideas related to the case. Your comments must be about the subject of the hearing, but may be about any aspect of the case. You can bring exhibits to better clarify your viewpoint. The ALJ will determine if your exhibits can be entered into the record along with your testimony. You do not need an attorney to testify, and you do not need to stay for the entire duration of the hearing.
• For more information about requirements for written comments in lieu of speaking at a hearing see
Guide to Request Public Testimony Comments in Lieu of Testimony.
• For more information about making an effective comment, seeGuide to Create an Effective Comment.
•If you are with an organized group whose members share the same opinions, it is often best to choose one or two persons to testify on behalf of the entire group. Acceptance of a petition is at the ALJ’s discretion.
•If you are disabled or hearing impaired, special arrangements will be made for you provided the PSC is notified ahead of time.