Arizona high court closes case against ex-utility regulator

PHOENIX -- The Arizona Supreme Court has declined to consider a case seeking the removal of a top utility regulator from office after she stepped down from office.

The high court on Tuesday issued a brief order declining to accept jurisdiction over a case filed by Attorney General Mark Brnovich. He wanted Corporation Commissioner Susan Bitter Smith removed from office because of a conflict of interest.

Bitter Smith represents the cable television industry as a lobbyist but denies that her work includes regulated telephone companies overseen by the commission. Brnovich says the cable companies also own telephone companies and that makes Bitter Smith ineligible for office.
 
Bitter Smith tendered her resignation last month and it took effect Monday. Gov. Doug Ducey appointed former Arizona House Speaker Andy Tobin as her replacement.

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