The British Columbia Utilities Commission (the Commission) is responsible for making decisions in the public interest and is legally required to ensure its processes are fair, transparent and inclusive. Public hearings are the major source of public input to the Commission’s decisions. A lack of understanding about complex and technical information and limited resources (both money and time) can inadvertently exclude the public from participating in these hearings. As the mandate of the Commission evolves, its obligation to engage and seek input from the public about issues affecting them is increasing. This study provides recommendations for enhancing public participation and engagement in public hearings conducted by the Commission. The study draws on best practices to develop an implementation strategy and to highlight decisions critical to advancing public participation and engagement initiatives.
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