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Power customers throughout the state may not know what the California Public Utilities Commission is, but the agency sure has a big impact on their lives and wallets.

The CPUC regulates privately owned utility and transit companies. Most San Diegans get their energy from privately owned gas and power companies, like SDG&E. But they mostly get their water from public agencies, such as the city of San Diego water department, which the CPUC does not regulate.

Over the past couple of years, the agency has received a wave of support and criticism for the way it has dealt with controversial issues, including denying SDG&E’s request to raise rates after the 2007 wildfires or having customers foot the bill for problems at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. Currently, there are several cases before the CPUC that could potentially alter where and who ratepayers get their power from, ultimately affecting their power bills.

On this week’s San Diego Explained, Voice of San Diego’s Ry Rivard and NBC 7’s Monica Dean go over the California Public Utilities Commission’s role and their impact on power customers across the state.

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