Democratic News

At Energy Committee Chairman Jeff Bingaman’s request, Majority Leader Tom Daschle has asked President Bush to nominate New Mexican Suedeen Kelly to fill a vacancy on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). The position is a White House appointment, but the Senate Energy Committee chairman traditionally has an influential role in recommending candidates. “The entire West, including New Mexico, produces a substantial amount of the energy that powers our nation’s economy,” Bingaman said. “I think it’s very important that the West be represented on this important commission, and I think Suedeen Kelly would bring valuable experience and perspective to the work of this panel.” Bingaman said Kelly, chairwoman of the New Mexico Public Utilities Commission from 1984-86, is ideally suited for the position. As a law professor at the University of New Mexico, the Albuquerque resident teaches public utility regulation, energy law, legislative process and administrative practice. During sabbaticals from the law school she has been a fellow at the Senate Energy Committee and regulatory counsel for the California Independent System Operator. She also as been in private law practice in Santa Fe and Washington, and served as an attorney in the Public Utilities Division of the New Mexico Office of the Attorney General. FERC regulates the transmission and sale of natural gas for resale in interstate commerce; regulates the transmission of oil by pipeline in interstate commerce; regulates the transmission and wholesale sales of electricity in interstate commerce; oversees energy-related environmental matters; and approves siting as well as abandonment of interstate pipelines. # # #