The Oklahoma Corporation Commission was created in 1907 to regulate public service corporations, those businesses whose services are considered essential to the public welfare. Some of the public utilities that the Commission oversees include the telecommunications industry, electric and gas services.
The Corporation Commission is comprised of three commissioners who are elected by statewide vote to serve six-year terms. The terms are staggered so one commissioner vacancy occurs every two years. The election pattern was established when the Commission was created by the state constitution. The first three elected commissioners drew lots for two-year, four-year and six-year terms.
On the ballot
Although usually there will only be one corporation commissioner position on the ballot in any given year, this year there are two. A short-term corporation commissioner will be selected to fill the remainder of an unexpired term ending in 2010. A full-term position will also be filled. That term expires in 2014.
Corporation Commissioner (Short Term)
Two Republicans and one Democrat are in the running for the short-term commissioner seat. Democrat Jim Roth of Oklahoma City, who currently serves on the commission, is running unopposed on the Democratic ticket. Two Republicans will be on the primary election ballot July 29: Rob Johnson of Oklahoma City and Dana Murphy of Edmond.
Corporation Commissioner (Long Term)
Charles Gray (D-Oklahoma City) and Jeff Cloud (R-Oklahoma City) will be on the ballot in the regular election this November. Cloud currently serves on the commission by appointment. Jeff Cloud is an attorney running for his first elected office. A lifelong Oklahoman, he is married to Trish. Charles Gray currently serves on the Oklahoma House of Representatives (his second term). He is married to Twyla and is a lifelong Oklahoman.