US President Donald Trump has nominated Indian-American Neil Chatterjee to a key administration position in the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), an agency charged with overseeing America's power grid and deciding on multibillion-dollar energy projects.
The White House said President Trump intends to nominate Neil Chatterjee, 40, of Kentucky as a Member of FERC for the term expiring June 30, 2021.
Chatterjee, who is an energy policy advisor to US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, has played an integral role in the passage of major energy, highway and farm legislation, the White House said. He needs to be confirmed by the Senate before he can be sworn in as a member of Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
Prior to serving with McConnell, he worked as a principal in Government Relations for National Rural Electric Cooperative Association and as an aide to House Republican Conference Chairwoman Deborah Pryce of Ohio. He began his career in Washington, DC, with the House Committee on Ways and Means.
A Lexington, Kentucky native, he is a graduate of St Lawrence University and the University of Cincinnati College of Law.
Last week, US lawmakers had expressed concern over vacancy in this important federal regulatory commission.
“I’d like to see some names now. It's very frustrating that we are here on May 3 and there hasn't been a quorum at FERC for months now,” said Senate Energy Chairwoman Lisa Murkowski.
“We can't do much of anything in the energy space until there is a functioning quorum at the FERC. First, we need to get names so that we can actually act as a committee. Believe me, I am urging anybody who will listen that they need to get moving on it,” she said.