Gov. Dannel P. Malloy appointed former state Rep. Michael Caron, a Republican, on Thursday to serve as a director of the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority, a three-member panel responsible for regulating rates and services of electricity, natural gas, water, and telecommunications providers.

Caron represented Killingly and Plainfield in the House of Representatives from 1991 through 2008, but he now lives in West Hartforfd with his wife, Maureen Magnan, a top aide to House Majority Leader J. Brendan Sharkey, D-Hamden.

“Michael Caron has an extensive background in public policy and public service-his experience will be invaluable to PURA,” said Malloy said. “It is critical that we address Connecticut’s high energy costs in multiple ways-improving efficiency and conservation efforts, ensuring consumer advocacy during rate request reviews, and engaging a comprehensive policy development strategy for energy and utility providers. I am confident that Michael will serve the state well as a member of PURA.”

As a member of the General Assembly, he served on the Energy and Technology Committee and was an assistant minority leader.

“As we look toward our future — a cleaner energy economy and exponential growth in technology — PURA has an important role to play stabilizing and protecting our economy,” Caron said.  I thank the governor for his confidence and look forward to working with Chairman [Arthur] House and Vice Chair [Jack] Betkoski.”

Caron most recently served as a lobbyist for Camilliere, Cloud & Kennedy. He previousoy was the director of public affairs for global sites for Pfizer Inc.

He will serve as a PURA director on an interim basis until the legislature can consider his nomination in the regular 2013 session, which starts in January.

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Keith M. PhaneufState Budget Reporter

Keith has spent most of his 31 years as a reporter specializing in state government finances, analyzing such topics as income tax equity, waste in government and the complex funding systems behind Connecticut’s transportation and social services networks. He has been the state finances reporter at CT Mirror since it launched in 2010. Prior to joining CT Mirror Keith was State Capitol bureau chief for The Journal Inquirer of Manchester, a reporter for the Day of New London, and a former contributing writer to The New York Times. Keith is a graduate of and a former journalism instructor at the University of Connecticut.

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