The Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSC) is responsible for the regulation of Wisconsin public utilities, including those that are municipally owned.
Typical types of utilities regulated include electric, natural gas, telephone, water, and combined water and sewer. In Wisconsin, most activities of the 28 electric cooperatives are not under the jurisdiction of the PSC. Energy sources like fuel oil, propane, coal, natural gas and gasoline are not under the PSC’s jurisdiction.
More than 1,100 utilities are under the agency's jurisdiction. Most of these must obtain PSC approval before:
- Setting new Rates
- Issuing stocks or bonds
- Undertaking major construction projects such as power plants, water wells, and transmission lines.
The PSC works to ensure that, in the absence of competition, adequate and reasonably priced service is provided to utility customers.
The Division of Energy Regulation (DER) is responsible for supporting the mission of the Commission to assure safe, reliable and fair provision of electricity and natural gas for the customers of the utilities it regulates. DER conducts financial and engineering analyses; audits and investigates electric and natural gas utilities and utility holding companies; designs electric and natural gas rates; reviews applications for construction of transmission, electric, and natural gas utility infrastructure; conducts environmental reviews for all new construction; and oversees natural gas pipeline safety. In addition to electric and natural gas rate and tariff matters, the division provides economic and statistical analysis on the operations of investor-owned utilities.