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ACC Public Records and AG Office Lawsuits Update

Sedona AZ (June 6, 2016) – The following is a letter to the SedonaEye.com editor:

Lawsuits Update: ACC Public Records Lawsuit Bombshell +
Corruption at the AG Office?
Information & Perspective by Warren Woodward
Sedona, Arizona ~ June 5, 2016

Public Records Case Against the ACC at Superior Court

The ACC is tasked with the responsibility to protect AZ ratepayers by weighing the costs and benefits of all state utility requests.

The ACC is tasked with the responsibility to protect AZ ratepayers by weighing the costs and benefits of all state utility requests.

A couple weeks ago the judge in my public records lawsuit against the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) surprised everyone by sending me a copy of the documents that the ACC had sent him for review. These are documents that the ACC had redacted. In the version the judge got from the ACC the documents were unredacted so he could determine if the redactions the ACC had made were legitimate.

          In his Order that accompanied the copy of unredacted documents that he sent me, the judge gave no explanation except to say that the Court thought it “appropriate” that I should have a copy. As far as I know, it is unprecedented for the Plaintiff (me) in such a case to receive unredacted documents like this.

          In his Order, the judge also forbade me from distributing the documents. So I cannot quote directly from them.

         I will say that the documents confirm what I have said all along during this saga — the ACC redacts largely because it can. Almost all the redactions I saw are completely bogus and, in my opinion, illegal. Many are downright ridiculous, as in Why did they bother? Oh that’s right, because they can.

          I did find a few juicy bits, but they are mostly of an embarrassing nature and not anything that would have someone led away in handcuffs. That said, I do think the redactions are illegal, and that the perpetrators belong in jail. I gave the ACC three chances to get my public records request right and all they did was stonewall.

Concealing Public Records with intent to deceive is a class 6 felony (1 year jail). Secreting “the whole or any part thereof” of a Public Record is a class 4 felony (2 & 1/2 years jail).

Woodward v. Brnovich at the Arizona Supreme Court

Arizona Attorney GeneralA couple weeks ago I received notice from the Arizona Supreme Court that my case against Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich was “continued.” I did not know exactly what that meant but it certainly sounded better than “discontinued.” It turns out it means that they are still considering the case.

          This is the case I brought against AZ AG Brnovich seeking to compel him to do his job, follow the law, and begin proceedings against ACC commissioner Robert Burns for usurping office. Burns was a registered lobbyist for an outfit that supported telecom legislation beneficial to companies that the ACC regulates. He held that position both during his campaign and after his election to the ACC. Conflict of interest law specific to the ACC forbids that.

          In addition to my complaint against commissioner Burns, the AG office has ignored various other complaints I have lodged with them over the years. For example they were not at all interested that I had proof of felony Public Records Law violations at the ACC. No search warrants or subpoenas were ever issued in the ACC whistleblower case, a story that broke well over a year ago (whistleblower’s letter is here: http://archive.azcentral.com/persistent/icimages/news/ACC_whistleblower_letter_02-18-15.pdf ). Heck, the AG office doesn’t even care that ACC commissioner Bob Stump destroyed state property by throwing away his phone in what many think was a lame attempt to also destroy the Public Records stored in it. For these and similar reasons I have long suspected corruption at the AZ AG office.

          Recently, I read an affidavit by a former investigator at the AG office that fueled my suspicion. It is very long and very detailed, but if you like reading real-life crime dramas you might want to take the time, or at least scroll down to the Conclusion which covers all the bases, and thoroughly so.

          Dan Woods is a former FBI special agent, former technical operations officer at the CIA, and former AZ AG Assistant Chief. He has an excellent record. While at the AG office he spent something like 4 years investigating a convoluted white collar criminal conspiracy that involved numerous people, both in Arizona and California. Woods’ investigation resulted in multiple indictments and plea agreements. But when his investigation led him to a powerful AZ law firm, the investigation was abruptly halted by his superiors, and his employment at the AZ AG office was terminated. Read it and judge for yourself if the AZ AG office is corrupt.  https://arizonadailyindependent.com/2016/05/19/former-special-agent-tells-arizona-supreme-court-of-brnovich-corruption/

“Smart” meter related Lawsuit at Court of Appeals

No news in my case against the ACC for, among other things, violating various laws in their “smart” meter decision of over a year ago. Just waiting for a decision. This is the case that got stalled because of a bogus jurisdictional issue.

Warren Woodward
Sedona AZ

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Read www.SedonaEye.com for daily news and interactive views!

1 Comment

  1. ACC investigates APS & ACC's Pierce says:

    FBI interviews former Corp Comm chairman, Corp Comm staff in 2014 election probe

    Agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation today interviewed former Arizona Corporation Commissioner Gary Pierce and Corporation Commission staffers as part of a probe into the 2014 elections.

    Pierce confirmed that two agents were at his home, which also serves as his office. A Corporation Commission spokeswoman confirmed that agents also showed up at the state agency seeking information.

    Pierce said it wasn’t a raid, and he wasn’t served with any documents.

    “The FBI came over and showed up at my door about 11 o’clock today, and we sat down and had an interview,” Pierce said. “They were cordial, polite, [and] asked me some questions relative to the 2014 election.”

    He added: “They’re trying to arrive at the truth.”

    Pierce said he fully cooperated with the investigators, who also asked him not to divulge much information about his conversation with them.

    “They’ve got some things they want to do and talk to folks they’d like to talk to, and I was just one of them,” he said.

    Corporation Commission spokeswoman Angie Holdsworth said the state agency was contacted as part of an ongoing FBI investigation and “is cooperating to the fullest extent possible.”

    Pierce hinted that politics might be behind the FBI’s investigation, although he was careful to emphasize he doesn’t think the authorities are politically motivated.

    “I think the sources of a lot of this stuff [are] just folks with a political agenda, and I think the various authorities are going to sift their way through and figure it out,” he said.

    Pierce retired from the Arizona Corporation Commission in 2014. He was elected to the commission in 2006 and 2010, and served as its chairman in his last two years in office.

    His son, Justin Pierce, unsuccessfully ran for the secretary of state’s office two years ago.

    During the campaign, Wil Cardon, one of Justin Pierce’s Republican opponents, accused the father and son of using Gary Pierce’s position as a corporation commissioner to gain support for Justin Pierce from groups with business before the commission. Both Gary and Justin Pierce have denied the allegations.

    Justin Pierce’s campaign flatly denied any suggestion that he sought to capitalize on his father’s position as a regulator to get support from individuals and companies that do business with the Corporation Commission. His camp also shot back at Cardon, calling the insinuation “false and inaccurate” and said this was all part of the businessman’s “dirty campaign tricks and tactics.’’

    APS spokesman Jim McDonald said, “Pinnacle West has been contacted by the U.S. Attorney and will be cooperating fully.”

    Read more: http://azcapitoltimes.com/news/2016/06/10/fbi-interviews-former-corp-comm-chairman-corp-comm-staff-in-2014-election-probe/#ixzz4BFVdw4rA

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