APS staying out of Arizona Corporation Commission races so far

By Ryan Randazzo,| Arizona Republic

So far this year, Arizona Public Service Co. has mostly stayed out of the Corporation Commission elections, while the League of Conservation Voters — a nationwide environmental advocacy group — is spending $4 million to support Democrats.

The lack of spending from APS, should it continue, is a marked change from the 2016 commission elections.

Related: Campaigns spend nearly $54 million on renewable energy ballot measure

APS funnels $30M into swaying prop 127 votes

Two years ago, APS’ parent company openly advocated for its preferred Corporation Commission candidates, and it spent about $4 million endorsing three Republicans.

In 2014, its participation through dark-money groups that don’t disclose donors was suspected but never confirmed by the company.

The company’s money was “accidentally” used by the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry to attack Democrats running for the commission in 2012, and the chamber president officials apologized. The long-standing tradition for APS at the time was to avoid participating in commission elections.

APS isn’t the only outside entity to spend in the races in past years, and Republicans aren’t the only beneficiaries.

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