Welch Nominated as Public Utilities Commission Commissioner

March 14, 2011

Augusta, Maine – Governor Paul LePage announced today that Thomas Welch of Hancock has been nominated as Commissioner of the Maine Public Utilities Commission (MPUC). Welch, if approved, would join current Commissioners Vendean Vafiades and David Littell.

Welch served as Chairman of the MPUC from 1993 to 2005 and played a leading role in the adoption of incentive regulation for Maine’s major telephone utility. Prior to joining the Public Utilities Commission, Welch was Chief Deputy Attorney General for Antitrust in the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office; in-house counsel for Bell Atlantic; an associate at McCutchen, Doyle, Brown & Enersen; and Assistant Professor at Villanova University School of Law. Most recently, Welch has been a member of Pierce Atwood's Energy and Regulatory practice. Since 2006 he has provided advice to a broad spectrum of participants in the electric, telecommunications and gas industries. Welch is included in the 2010 edition of The Best Lawyers in America for Energy Law.

Welch received his A.B., Phi Beta Kappa, from Stanford University and his J.D. from Harvard Law School

Welch will appear before the Joint Standing Committee on Energy, Utilities and Technology in the upcoming weeks. A date has not yet been scheduled.

The MPUC regulates electric, natural gas, telecommunications and water utilities to ensure that Maine consumers enjoy safe, adequate and reliable services at rates that are just and reasonable for both consumers and utilities. The Commission oversees emerging competitive markets for some of these services. The Commission also regulates water taxis and ferries in Casco Bay, and promotes safe digging through the Dig Safe underground utility damage prevention program.