PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - A day after state regulators grilled the top executives of Arizona Public Service over its business practices, a consumer advocate wants a firm commitment that the power company will stay out of politics.

On Wednesday, Jeff Guldner, who will take over the state's largest power company in November, declined to make that commitment.

[WATCH: APS executives dodge questions about political spending]

Diane Brown, an executive for a top consumer watchdog group in Arizona, said APS should spend its money cutting costs for consumers, not on trying to influence elections.

[RELATED: Utility regulators grill Arizona Public Service executives]

"Customers have every right to be upset knowing that they already experienced a rate hike," Brown said Thursday.

The Arizona Corporation Commission approved of that rate hike in 2017, three years after APS started spending big money to get commissioners elected.

Bob Burns, the chairman of the regulating body, accused APS of trying to "capture the commission" with their political spending.

He then asked Guldner to pledged that APS stay out of any race involving the corporation commission or other issues involving energy and power.

While Guldner declined to make that pledge, he did say he will come back to the commission on November to discuss the issue.

 


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