July 1, 2022

Governor Mills Swears in William Harwood As Public Advocate

Governor Janet Mills currently swore in William Harwood as Community Advocate for the Point out of Maine. Harwood, a person of Maine’s most expert energy and utility lawyers, was unanimously confirmed for the posture by the Maine State Senate now. The Legislature’s Joint Standing Committee on Strength, Utilities and Technological know-how had also unanimously voted on January 11, 2022 to propose his affirmation.

“When it arrives to utilities in Maine, several folks are more seasoned or professional than Bill – and no just one is greater positioned than him to stand up for Maine folks and hold our utilities accountable to them,” stated Governor Janet Mills. “I seem forward to working with Invoice and drawing on his deep expertise to advance our endeavours to hold utilities accountable and produce trustworthy provider for Maine persons.”

“I am honored and deeply humbled by the unanimous vote of the Maine Senate to confirm my appointment as General public Advocate,” mentioned Invoice Harwood. “This is an important time for Maine and there is considerable do the job forward to depict and safeguard the passions of Maine ratepayers, maintain our utilities accountable to make sure shipping and delivery of affordable, reliable services to all Maine people today, and enable navigate the power changeover in Maine and its influence on our climate, environment, and financial system. I seem ahead to finding started out, and will do all in my power to reside up to the accountability bestowed on me currently.”

The Workplace of the Community Advocate’s main duty is to represent the pursuits of Maine utility customers, principally in proceedings ahead of the Maine Public Utilities Fee (PUC) and in cases in advance of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the Federal Communications Fee (FCC).

Prior to his confirmation, Harwood served as Senior Advisor for Regulatory Affairs in the Governor’s Energy Workplace, a posture he has held since September of 2021.

Prior to joining the Governor’s Strength Business office, Harwood served as Senior Counsel at Verrill Dana in Portland. Over his 4-ten years authorized profession, he represented a huge assortment of entities, these kinds of as utility consumers, community utilities, renewable strength businesses, engineering firms, paper mills, and faculties and universities, in issues before condition and federal regulatory businesses. He has also served landowners, from blueberry growers to nursing houses, in their negotiations with renewable power builders concerning the siting and rewards of new solar tasks.

Harwood has also been involved in a lot of drinking water utility troubles in Maine, such as representing clients in disputes above water fees, disputes with proprietors of land adjacent to resources of source and disputes around entry to drinking water materials. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor of Legislation at the College of Maine School of Legislation, in which he taught utility regulation and administrative law.

Harwood has served on the Board of the Maine Bar Basis and Authorized Expert services for the Aged, which include as its Chair. He has also served on the governing boards of Hearthstone Inc., Katahdin Institute, The Jackson Laboratory, Yarmouth Historic Culture, Waynflete University and Maine Justice Basis, and the Hurricane Island Foundation. He is a past recipient of the Muskie Entry to Justice Award, the American Bar Association Professional Bono Publico Award, and the Howard Dana Award for Superb Company for his perform to endorse absolutely free legal services for the inadequate.

Harwood is a graduate of Harvard College and Fordham University. He life in Yarmouth with his wife, Ellen, and has 5 developed youngsters.

Harwood replaces previous Public Advocate Barry Hobbins, who retired from the posture in June 2021. Andrew Landry, Deputy Community Advocate, has served as Acting Community Advocate in the interim.