Assembly elects Patricia West, former judge and top aide to Allen, Cuccinelli to SCC post

The long search for a new judge on the State Corporation Commission ended with the surprise election on Wednesday of a Republican former judge whose candidacy started a partisan battle over public transparency and gender in a critical election year.

Republican majorities in both chambers of the General Assembly elected former Judge Patricia West — a conservative Regent University official and former key aide to Gov. George Allen and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli — to fill the SCC post vacated by the retirement of Judge Jimmy Dimitri at the end of February.

West, 57, will become the third judge on an independent commission established in the Virginia Constitution to oversee public utilities, banks and insurance companies. The SCC is now under increasing pressure from the General Assembly to carry out its priorities for regulating electric utilities and expanding use of renewable energy.

Read More (Richmond Times Dispatch)