- About CUB
The Citizens Utility Board (CUB), Wisconsin's only consumer advocacy group fighting for utility ratepayers, is a member-supported nonprofit organization that advocates for reliable and affordable utility service and that represents the interests of residential, farm, and small business customers of electric, natural gas, and telecommunication utilities before regulatory agencies and the courts.
16 N. Carroll St.
Madison, WI 53703
(608) 251-7609 FAX
The Citizens Utility Board:
- Provides public interest legal services to ensure effective and democratic representation of residential, farm and small business utility customers before regulatory agencies, the legislature, and the courts, and other public bodies;
- Advocates for reliable, affordable and sound utility service;
- Educates consumers on utility service through the preparation, compilation, analysis, and dissemination of information and resource materials relating to utilities regulation and public energy and telecommunications policy, and generally engage in and support public education regarding utilities regulation and public energy and telecommunications policy.
The Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSC) regulates monopoly public utilities and must balance the interests of ratepayers and utility shareholders. Utilities are required to provide good service at fair rates for consumers with a fair rate of return for utilities.
The PSC makes these decisions at formal hearings where the positions of both consumers and utilities are heard and in return utilities can earn a reasonable profit for providing service.
But, before CUB, consumers lacked the organization and expertise to effectively counter the arguments of the utilities, who were able to count on the talents of full time attorneys and other experts paid for by rates.
CUB is the product of the consumer movement triggered by Ralph Nader and others in the 1960's and 1970's.
In 1979, by act of the Wisconsin legislature, the first CUB was created in Wisconsin to give consumers a voice in the regulatory proceedings which control monopoly utilities.
In 1986, CUB Wisconsin reorganized as a private nonprofit organization in response to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that found unconstitutional the requirement for utilities to include CUB membership brochures in their bills.
CUB exists today because of the power and generosity of its membership. CUB is a 501(c)(3) organization supported by members who are concerned about utility service, and are willing to help CUB fight for reliable and affordable utility service.
In Wisconsin, utilities can only raise rates upon authorization of the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSC). The PSC typically hears the reasons for the request in a rate case.
CUB represents Wisconsin utility customers in these highly technical rate cases at the PSC . Attorneys and consultants from around the country are utilized on a case by case basis because of their unique expertise particular to issues arising in each case.
Based on the findings of our experts, CUB argues for reductions in the amount of increase sought by the utilities.
What does the PSC do?
The Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSC) is a state agency that is responsible for the regulation of Wisconsin's public and municpally owned utilities.
These utilities must obtain PSC approval before setting new rates, issuing stock or bonds, and building new power plants or power lines.
President - Russell Wallace
Vice-President - Donald Wichert
Secretary - Andy Olsen
Treasurer - Gretchen Schuldt Doege
Phone: (608) 251-3322 ext. 14
Phone: (608) 251-3322 ext. 11
Phone: (608) 251-3322 ext. 15