CHARLESTON, W.Va. – West Virginia will soon have a brand new state consumer advocate. The state Public Service Commission appointed Jacqueline Lake Roberts to the position. She’ll take over October 1.
Roberts has been working in the office for the past three years under retiring Advocate Byron Harris.
“They’re big shoes to fill,” said Roberts.
But she feels ready for the job. In fact, she said there’s too much work to do not to hit the ground running. She said the advocate’s office is an important voice for the rate payers of West Virginia.
“[Before 1981] residential customers didn’t have a voice in those proceedings,” she explained. “So it’s a very important function of making regulation work well.”
Roberts will be fighting for utility consumers of West Virginia to make sure they’re getting the best possible rates. She stressed, in this day and age, that is incredibly important.
“It’s hard for residential customers, especially when the economy isn’t robust or if you’re on a fixed income,” according to Roberts.
She admitted the job is not for everyone but it’s perfect for her.
“I’ve been doing this kind of work for many years and I really enjoy it,” said Roberts. “I really enjoy the public service aspect of it and giving customers a voice when they don’t have one.”
And West Virginians will be hearing a lot of her voice as multiple rate increases come before the state Public Service Commission in the months to come.