2 other contests also face runoffs

ATLANTA --- The U.S. Senate runoff is getting more attention, but two other races will be on Georgia ballots Dec. 2: Runoffs for a seat on the Public Service Commission, which regulates investor-owned utilities, and a Court of Appeals judgeship.


The PSC will set the rules for the construction of the nation's two newest nuclear-power plants, and its newest member will vote in March on whether Georgia Power customers will pay the cost of construction before or after the plants are operating.

Republican Lauren "Bubba" McDonald faces Democrat Jim Powell. Mr. McDonald served as a Democrat on the commission until he was defeated six years ago by Republican Angela Speir, who has since retired. Though Mr. McDonald has joined Ms. Speir's party, she has endorsed Mr. Powell.

Mr. McDonald has often supported company requests, saying it helps utilities attract investor funds and that minimal regulation results in lower rates, which will attract employers.

Mr. Powell has been a consultant to government and industry after a 35-year career in the Energy Department. He says he would try to keep rates low and encourage the use of alternative fuels and conservation.

The court race is between Sara Doyle and Mike Sheffield. Ms. Doyle, who belongs to one of Atlanta's largest corporate law firms, notes that she has taken more cases to the appeals court than Mr. Sheffield, a prosecutor turned defense lawyer.

Reach Walter Jones at (404) 589-8424 or walter.jones@morris.com.