Domenici Seeks
Comprehensive Bill

As congressional negotiators launched a conference to work out differences on energy legislation, the lead Senate conferee said he opposed splitting off electricity provisions and passing them separately.

At the conference's opening session on Sept. 5, Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Pete V. Domenici (R-N.M.) said "I do believe that we should reach agreement on a comprehensive energy bill. And I do not support efforts to break it apart in a piecemeal fashion. We will look at the entire bill, not pieces of it."

Dingell Proposed
Stand-Alone Electricity
Reliability Measure

Domenici, whom conferees elected to chair the joint House-Senate negotiating sessions, also said he hoped to produce a compromise bill by the end of September.

Rep. John D. Dingell of Michigan, the senior Democrat on the Energy and Commerce Committee, introduced a bill on Sept. 4 that would make the now-voluntary electricity reliability standards mandatory. In the wake of the Aug. 14 blackout that hit a large swath of the Northeast, Midwest and Canada, Dingell called on the lawmakers to approve that electricity bill first, and then move on to the other energy issues.

(Photos courtesy of Office of Sen. Pete Domenici
and Office of Rep. John Dingell)