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Gov. Reynolds appoints former Rep. Josh Byrnes to Iowa Utilities Board

Former legislator will replace Nick Wagner

Iowa Utilities Board members Nick Wagner (from left), Elizabeth Jacobs and Geri Huser talk together during a public hear
Iowa Utilities Board members Nick Wagner (from left), Elizabeth Jacobs and Geri Huser talk together during a public hearing about the proposed Dakota Access pipeline, at the Boone County Fairground in Boone in November 2015. (The Gazette)

Gov. Kim Reynolds appointed Josh Byrnes to the three-person Iowa Utilities Board Monday, subject to approval from the Iowa Senate.

If approved by the Senate, the appointment will be effective Dec. 14.

“He’s gained invaluable experience from serving in different levels of the utility sector, and now he’s ready to apply that expertise on the Iowa Utilities Board,” Reynolds said in a statement. “Josh understands the impact the IUB’s decisions can have on the lives of all Iowans.”

Byrnes will replace Nick Wagner, who left the board in July to take a vice president-level position with Rapid City, S.D.-based Black Hills Energy.

Byrnes is the general manager of Osage Municipal Utilities and previously was a three-term Republican representative in the Iowa House. His district covered Worth, Mitchell and Howard counties and part of Winneshiek County.

He joins lawyers Geri Huser and Richard Lozier on the board. Huser’s term will expire in 2021, and Lozier’s in 2023.

The board “regulates utilities to ensure that reasonably priced, reliable, environmentally responsible, and safe utility services are available to all Iowans,” according to its website.

Comments: (319) 398-8394; john.steppe@thegazette.com

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