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Deukmejian Appoints Wilk to PUC Post

December 17, 1986|BRUCE KEPPEL

Gov. George Deukmejian named aide G. Mitchell Wilk of Sacramento to the state Public Utilities Commission on Tuesday to succeed Priscilla Grew, who resigned last Nov. 1.

The appointment, subject to Senate confirmation, gives Deukmejian a 3-2 majority of appointees on the commission, which sets phone, gas, electric and other utility rates in the state.

Wilk, 40, has been a special assistant to Deukmejian's chief of staff, Steven Merksamer, since January, 1985, after having joined the governor's staff the previous year as liaison between the governor's office and private-interest groups.

Before that he was director of governmental relations for Fireman's Fund Insurance Cos., in Novato, Calif., and had been a lobbyist and financial analyst for the American Insurance Assn.

Grew, who previously served as director of the Department of Conservation under former Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr., cut short her term, which was to end Dec. 31, to become Minnesota state geologist. The term of another Brown appointee, Victor Calvo, a former Democratic member of the state Assembly from Mountain View, Calif., also expires Dec. 31.

Calvo's imminent departure will give the governor a fourth appointment to make to the five-member commission. That will leave current President Donald Vial, a labor leader who was Brown's director of industrial relations, as the sole carryover from the Brown Administration.

In view of the shift in the commission majority, Vial, who has two years remaining in his term, is not expected to continue next year as president--a largely ministerial job except for the higher public visibility that comes with it.

The other commissioners appointed by Deukmejian are Stanley W. Hulett and Frederick R. Duda.

Commissioners receive annual salaries of $76,079.

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