PROVIDENCE – The chairperson of the Energy Facility Siting Board will leave the position once proceedings on the proposal by Invenergy to build a new power plant in Burrillville conclude.
Gov. Gina Raimondo has nominated Laura S. Olton, a Massachusetts-based energy attorney, to head the state’s Public Utility Commission. The PUC chairperson also leads the EFSB, where Olton will replace Margaret Curran, current head of the three-member board.
The news comes as a five-year application process for a proposed 1,000-megawatt, gas-burning power plant off of Wallum Lake Road is set to conclude. Deliberations on the proposal, first submitted in 2015, begin later this month.
Olton runs LSO Energy Advisors in Wellesley, Mass. and is the former general counsel of the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities and National Grid in Rhode Island. The governor will submit her name to the Senate for advice and consent.
Curran has served in the role since 2013, when she was appointed to a six-year term by former Gov. Lincoln Chafee. That term was set to end in February, but she will continue to oversee the EFSB until deliberations on a Chicago-based company’s $1 billion proposal have concluded.
Olton will serve on the EFSB for all other matters.