SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Republicans Chris Nelson and Kristie Fiegen (FEE'-gihn) have kept their seats on the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission, meaning that the GOP has all three seats on the panel.
The 50-year-old Fiegen defeated Democratic challenger Matt McGovern for a six-year term on the commission that regulates grain warehouses and natural gas, electric and telephone utilities. Commission Chairman Chris Nelson defeated challenger Nick Nemec, a farmer and former state lawmaker, for a four-year term.
The 48-year-old Nelson is a former secretary of state who, like Fiegen, was appointed about two years ago to fill a vacancy on the PUC.
Democrats had criticized the commission for not doing enough to protect farmers and keep utilities costs low. Republicans countered that they have protected farmers the best they could under current law.