Commissioners react to Attorney General’s lawsuits

Commissioner David headshot


Corporation Commissioner Kim David appears to be taking some of the credit for the investigation that led to State Attorney General Gentner Drummond’s lawsuits accusing two energy firms of market manipulation during the 2021 Winter Storm Uri.

“Shortly after joining the Corporation Commission, I formally asked Attorney General Gentner Drummond to investigate possible wrongdoing by natural gas marketers and pipeline operators during Winter Storm Uri,” stated David in a statement released Wednesday after Drummond filed his lawsuits in Osage County District Court.

“After heeding my request, the Attorney General, as the state’s chief prosecutor, opened an investigation and determined that a lawsuit is necessary to protect Oklahoma ratepayers.”

Commission Chairman Hiett also issued a statement.

“The Oklahoma Corporation Commission has been and remains committed to helping Attorney General Drummond in his on-going investigation into the actions of the largely unregulated markets that drove natural gas prices up to an unimaginable level during winter storm Uri. I applaud his action today and his efforts to leave no stone unturned in the investigation. “

Commissioner Bob Anthony did not comment.

She and Commissioner Todd Hiett sent separate letters to the Attorney General after the Kansas Attorney General filed suit against Macquarie Energy accusing it of market manipulation in Kansas. Macquarie Energy was also a natural gas supplier in Oklahoma but AG Drummond did not launch any investigation until the summer of 2023.

Corporation Commissioner Bob Anthony argued at the time the Commission should do its own investigation and the dispute prompted Commissioners David and Hiett to send their letters to the AG. Hiett explained at the time, the commission did not have legal authority to investigate.

Actually, Commissioner David was not the first to ask for any investigation into the entire fiasco of the storm costs. As OK Energy Today reported in December 2022, three former legislators, Mike Reynolds, Porter H. Davis and Mike Rtize asked for an “immediate investigation” into what they labeled as “deliberate misinformation about the subsequent plans to charge Oklahoma ratepayers more for the storm costs. However, their request focused more on the legislative act that allowed utilities to use bonds to pass along storm costs to ratepayers for up to 25 years or longer.