Meridian Star

October 11, 2013

Barbour's ties to Southern Co. questioned in race

PHILLIP RAWLS / Associated Press
Associated Press

MONTGOMERY, Ala. — A candidate for Alabama's utility regulatory board has lined up a fundraiser Oct. 29 with former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour.

    Barbour founded a Washington lobbying group that has represented Alabama Power's parent company, the Southern Co.

    Republican Alabama Public Service Commission candidate Chip Beeker says he got Barbour's help through family members who are friends, and he considers it "pretty high cotton" for a normally low-key race.

    An Alabama Power spokesman says the company has no role in Beeker's fundraiser.

    Beeker's opponent, Republican incumbent Terry Dunn, says it indicates where Beeker will stand on utility issues if he's elected.

    Beeker is a former chairman of the Greene County Commission.