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Another FERC commissioner announces departure

Another FERC commissioner announces departure
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Federal Energy Regulatory Commissioner (FERC) Colette Honorable said Friday she will leave the board when her term expires in June. 

“After much prayer and consideration I’ve decided not to pursue another term,” Honorable wrote in a note posted on Twitter. 

“I appreciate the strong bipartisan support I’ve enjoyed over the years and look forward to continuing this important work after leaving the commission.”

Honorable’s retirement raises the possibility of there being only one FERC commissioner by this summer. 

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Trump named Cheryl LaFleur acting commissioner of the energy regulatory board in January, and hours later its previous head, Norman Bay, announced he was leaving FERC. The five-member body currently has two members — LaFleur and Honorable — and is short of a quorum. 

Energy industry groups have pushed Trump to nominate new commissioners for FERC, but the White House has yet to reveal who it might tap to sit on the board. 

“The lack of a quorum since February has prevented FERC from making major decisions regarding applications for crucial infrastructure development and improvement across the energy sector,” five gas industry officials wrote in a Washington Examiner op-ed this month. 

The group predicted it would take up to two months for the Senate to vet and approve any President Trump FERC nominees, a worrying prospect for sectors that rely on FERC’s approval power.

“That means FERC will have been sitting on the sidelines for half the year. The American people can't afford even one more day,” the groups wrote. 

Honorable, who was nominated to her FERC position by President Obama in August 2014, was confirmed unanimously by the Senate that December.