Public Utilities Commission

Annie Ropeik / NHPR

The New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission is moving forward with a study of local renewable energy generation. It could help clarify cost issues that have been a sticking point in the state legislature.

The study focuses on net metering, which allows energy customers to generate their own power – using technologies like solar or hydro – and sell it back to the grid. It can save money for consumers, but it saps revenue from electric utilities.

The Executive Council on Wednesday approved Martin Honigberg to serve as a Superior Court judge. The vote came more than a month after Gov. Chris Sununu froze the nomination in response to Democrats blocking his pick for Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

Honigberg will leave his current post as chair of the state Public Utilities Commission. He previously worked in the Attorney General’s office and as counsel for Gov. Jeanne Shaheen.

Newly appointed Public Utilities Commissioner Michael Harrington says having a pension from Northeast Utilities is not a good enough reason to disqualify him from hearing a case involving the utility – and so he won’t.

Harrington made the statement in an order he signed Tuesday dismissing a motion arguing that he has an unacceptable conflict of interest.

 

The Conservation Law Foundation has joined in a request that newly appointed Public Utilities Commissioner Michael Harrington be disqualified from hearing a case involving the Merrimack  Station powerplant because it feels there is a conflict of interest involving Public Service of New Hampshire.

The issue is that Harrington has a pension from Northeast Utilities, the parent company of PSNH, which routinely goes before the three-member commission.