Ex-McConnell aide leads energy panel as chairman steps down

WASHINGTON (AP) — A former aide to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is again leading the federal agency that oversees the nation’s power grid after the agency’s chairman stepped down for health reasons.

President Donald Trump tapped former Republican Senate staffer Neil Chatterjee to chair the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Chatterjee replaces lawyer Kevin McIntyre, who is stepping aside as chairman as he undergoes treatment for a brain tumor.

McIntyre, a Republican, will remain on the commission, which currently has two Republicans and two Democrats.

Trump has nominated Republican Bernard McNamee, head of the Energy Department’s Office of Policy, to fill the vacancy on the five-member panel. FERC oversees the power grid, interstate pipelines and other projects.

Chatterjee led FERC for four months last year before McIntyre became chairman in December.

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