• Pipeline agency at full strength as energy decision looms

    WASHINGTON (AP) - President Donald Trump's choice to lead the federal agency that oversees the nation's power grid and natural gas pipelines has been sworn in to office.

    Longtime energy lawyer Kevin McIntyre was confirmed last month as chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. His installation Thursday brings the commission to a full five members.

    The commission was without a quorum for much of the year and unable to make decisions on interstate pipelines and other projects worth billions of dollars.

    McIntyre arrives as the commission considers a Trump administration plan to bolster struggling nuclear and coal-fired power plants.

    The plan by Energy Secretary Rick Perry would reward nuclear and coal-fired power plants for adding reliability to the nation's power grid.

    Action by FERC is expected next week.

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