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Updated: Dempsey “strongly encourages” PSC to cancel hearing on SB 207


Updated: PSC Chairman Robert Kenney told the Missouri Times that they’re continuing to read through the letter.

“We’ve received the letter, and Sen. Dempsey makes some valid and fair points that we are in the process of evaluating,” Kenney added.

He said the Commission will meet Wednesday, as they do every week, and likely discuss the letter. And formal response will come after that.

By Scott Faughn

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. –  Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey has sent a letter strongly encouraging the Public Service Commission to reconsider their decision to hold a hearing on two pieces of pending energy legislation.

The letter, sent Monday, cites state statutes in claiming that no individual member of the General Assembly may request a hearing — only the leader of each body can do so.

Dempsey argued that only a resolution passed by either or both bodies would comply with the provisions of the statute. The statute Dempsey cites in his letter is 386.380.

In Sen. Eric Schmitt’s request, he cities the PSC statute in requesting their input on the bill currently on the Senate calendar.

Dempsey gave no reason in his letter as to why the PSC’s inquiry would be harmful, but did state that the precedent of any lawmaker being able to request a PSC hearing could flood the PSC with requests.

Dempsey and Schmitt were not immediately available for comment. However, Dempsey typically holds a media availability after session on Mondays.

The Missouri Times reported earlier this morning that several high ranking members of the House including the chairman of the utilities committee were urging the body to wait to hear the findings of the PSC hearing before brining the bill to the floor.

Kevin Kelly, a spokesperson for the PSC, said the Commission currently is analyzing the letter and the Chairman is expected to contact The Missouri Times this afternoon for further comment.

(For more information and background, see last night’s story “Legislators request PSC involvement in ISRS bills”)

To contact Scott Faughn, email, or via Twitter at @ScottFaughn.