FERC Reorganizes OGC to Speed Landowner Rehearing Process

FERC Reorganizes OGC to Speed Landowner Rehearing Process

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) announced that the Office of General Counsel (OGC) will be reorganizing the “process requests for rehearing of Natural Gas Act (NGA) section 7 certificate orders filed by affected landowners” to make it more expeditious.

In September, FERC Chairman Neil Chatterjee said he would work to “refine the FERC process to prioritize rehearing requests involving landowner issues, with a target of issuing rehearing orders within 30 days and reducing the use of tolling orders. At that time, Chatterjee designated attorneys in the rehearings group of the Solicitor’s Office to focus on rehearing requests involving landowner issues.”

“Our objective today is to reinforce the Commission’s commitment to ensure landowners are afforded a judicially appealable rehearing order as quickly as possible,” Chatterjee said. He says that he is “confident that this action will help substantially reduce the amount of time we take to issue rehearing orders in these critical cases.”

Chatterjee has directed OGC to create a new section specifically for rehearings, which “will have two separate groups, a Landowner Rehearings group and a General Rehearings group. The Landowner Rehearings group will give first priority to landowner rehearing requests, and would work on other rehearing items only when time permits.”

Chatterjee said he anticipates that this will allow them to move faster on any landowner requests for rehearings.

“We are hopeful that these actions will help alleviate the very real landowner concerns about timing and fairness in infrastructure cases implicating landowner rights,” Chatterjee said. “I remain committed to doing all we can to improve our FERC processes on this front.”