US Congressmen offer bill to reduce LNG permit backlog at FERC

July 30, 2018

US Reps. Pete Olson (R-Tex.) and Gene Green (D-Tex.) introduced legislation that would help the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission offer higher salaries to specialized engineers who play critical roles in reviewing applications to construct LNG projects.

Under HR 6552, FERC would have to consult with the US Office of Personnel Management to determine appropriate salaries for the positions, the two lawmakers jointly said on July 26. It also would only be able to offer higher salaries for positions or roles where FERC can confirm a critical need and would have to review that decision every 5 years, as well as report on hiring and staffing as the process moved forward, they emphasized.

“Not only is this step important in getting infrastructure built in this country, but it has precedent,” Olson said. “The [US] Securities and Exchange Commission was given similar authority by Congress to bridge the wage gap in the financial sector. It makes sense in highly specialized energy jobs to do the same.”

Green said, “[FERC] has a vital job for both ensuring environmental safety and advancing America’s energy dominance as we continue to see new expansion from the shale boom. It needs qualified engineers and lawyers to do this job effectively but often can’t recruit talented individuals into these roles due to the severe limits of the government pay scale when compared to the private sector.”...

Read entire article at Oil & Gas Journal. 

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