Mina Morita, the embattled chair of Hawaii’s Public Utilities Commission, has resigned, according to a press release from Gov. David Ige’s office.

There’s no word yet on Morita’s replacement. Cindy McMillan, a spokeswoman for Ige, said that it’s her understanding that Morita will remain on the commission for the time being in order “to facilitate the transition.”

Mina Morita Neil Abercrombie Public Utilities Commission

Mina Morita, former Gov. Neil Abercrombie.

Civil Beat

Morita was nominated by former Gov. Neil Abercrombie to head the commission, which exercises substantial power over the direction of the state’s energy policy. However, Abercrombie failed to nominate her for a second term, retaining her on a holdover basis only.

“For almost two decades, Mina has been the acknowledged leader in the state’s efforts to reduce dependency on imported oil and to develop local, renewable, and clean energy resources,” Ige said in a press release issued Monday.

 “Mina has been the driving force, both at the Legislature, where she made her mark as the House Energy Committee chair, and at the PUC, behind the policies that have positioned Hawaii as a national leader in clean energy. She has dedicated her life to creating a better environment and more sustainable communities. I thank Mina for her work. She embodies the values that make Hawaii a special place.”

You can read Civil Beat’s previous coverage on the issue here: Is Mina Morita Out as Hawaii’s Public Utilities Commission Chair?

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