Executive Summary

 

 

The mission of the Georgia Public Service Commission ("PSC" or "Commission") is to ensure that consumers receive the best possible value in telecommunications, electric and natural gas services and to improve transportation and pipeline safety. The PSC’s vision is to:

 

Although the telecommunications, natural gas and electric industries are becoming more competitive, the PSC recognizes that its responsibility to ensure that utility services are reliable and reasonably priced has not changed. Georgians should continue to have access to high quality utility services whether those services are priced in a competitive market or through economic regulation.

 

Public safety is a priority in both the State’s Strategic Plan and in the PSC’s Strategic Plan. The Commission enforces natural gas pipeline and commercial vehicle safety regulations. These programs are focused not only on detecting and correcting safety violations, but also on preventing pipeline incidents and commercial vehicle accidents. The PSC enhances public safety through an active inspection program, the enforcement of safety standards and through education of the industries and the public.

 

The PSC continually looks for ways to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of agency operations. The Governor has challenged all state agencies at every level to look at their operations in new ways. The Commission has identified several key areas where it can strive to deliver services to citizens in a more effective manner.

 

The PSC interacts with numerous individuals and organizations and demonstrates a commitment to these customers and stakeholders through consumer protection, public information and education. The Commission continues to expand its consumer protection function. The PSC has adopted strategies in this plan to increase and intensify agency-wide public information and education efforts and to work cooperatively with its network of internal and external partners in the public and private sectors.

 

The PSC has greatly enhanced access to public records and improved the efficiency of agency operations through the deployment of advanced computer technology. The Commission has installed a state of the art computer network to respond quickly to consumer questions and to facilitate decision-making. Public access to information will become more critical in the future. As regulated industries become competitive the PSC will be the principal source of objective information for the public concerning the performance of providers of utility services.

 

The strategic directions of this plan relate to four areas: Economic Regulation; Pipeline and Transportation Safety; Internal Operations and Information Technology; and Consumer Protection and Public Information. These strategies are designed to make the PSC’s vision a reality. The PSC strives to be a leader in both utility and transportation matters, to be responsive to customers and stakeholders, and to maintain and develop a technically competent staff. This plan provides for consumer protection, safety, quality of service and choice in the telecommunications, energy and transportation industries by emphasizing education, technology, partnerships and continual improvement. Strategies to improve our internal operations will ensure that the Commissioners have the data and technical support needed to make decisions that balance multiple interests and produce the best possible long term results.