Vermont Public Service Board Member Sarah Hofmann Takes the Reins
The Nuclear Waste Strategy Coalition (NWSC or Coalition) announces the election of Vermont Public Service Board Member Sarah Hofmann as its new chair and Florida Public Service Commissioner Julie Brown as another key addition to the executive team.
Recently appointed to the Vermont Public Service Board (PSB), NWSC Chair Sarah Hofmann succeeds Greg White, who recently retired from the Michigan Public Service Commission (PSC). A long-time and tenacious supporter of nuclear waste program reform, Chair Hofmann is well-suited to lead the NWSC. As a former consumer advocate, a former director of a New England association of state utility commissioners, and now a Vermont utility regulator, she has continually supported federal government action to provide consumers with what was promised by federal law and by contract in return for decades of payments into the Nuclear Waste Fund.
“I am excited to lead the Coalition as we push the federal government to step up and take responsibility for removing used nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste from shutdown and operating nuclear power facilities in Vermont, Maine, Minnesota, Washington, Texas, Florida, and many, many states in between,” said Chair Hofmann. “We urge both houses of Congress to fund the Yucca Mountain license review and to authorize and fund additional actions supporting the timely removal and ultimate disposal of nuclear waste.”
Florida PSC Commissioner Julie Brown fills another vacancy on the Executive Committee and will lead the group’s efforts to expand membership. Commissioner Brown engaged in NWSC activities after joining the Florida PSC in 2011 and quickly learning about the impacts of the federal government’s inaction on Florida electric consumers and taxpayers.
“As a charter member of the NWSC, the Florida PSC has long been actively involved in highlighting the federal government’s acceptance of billions from electric consumers across the US for the purpose of moving nuclear waste from utility plant sites to permanent disposal, something that was supposed to begin in 1998,” said Commissioner Brown. “The Department of Energy still hasn’t picked up its first shipment and refuses to follow Nuclear Waste Policy Act provisions concerning Yucca Mountain. I am honored to serve on the NWSC Executive Committee and work with our members to urge timely resolution.”
On behalf of the NWSC, Chair Hofmann also recognized Chairman Emeritus Greg White for his leadership and his tireless pursuits on behalf of electric consumers and others harmed by the federal government’s delay.
“Whether by NWSC members or Congressional members, Greg’s contributions are considered numerous and memorable,” she said.
Greg White served as NWSC Chairman from February through July 2015 and had been a member of the Executive Committee since 2010. In addition to many other duties in Michigan, at NARUC, and beyond, Greg relentlessly emphasized the government’s failure to meet its commitments regarding nuclear waste, and he recruited numerous public and private sector experts to join the NWSC in its efforts. Until his recent departure, Greg also chaired the NARUC Subcommittee on Nuclear Issues – Waste Disposal since March 2013 and the NARUC Washington Action Committee since January 2014. Testifying before Congress many times, Greg most recently appeared on NARUC’s behalf before the House Subcommittee on Environment & the Economy in May 2015 regarding nuclear waste and notably reminded them how long the NWSC had been calling for action.
NWSC Vice Chairman and DTE Energy’s Director of State Affairs Renze Hoeksema stated, “While many have been instrumental in the significant but often-overlooked victories since the NWSC’s formation, Chairman Emeritus Greg White has been there since Day 1, unapologetically calling out the federal government for its lack of action.” Regarding the NWSC’s new leadership, Renze added, “We are fortunate that knowledgeable, highly-regarded commissioners like Sarah Hofmann and Julie Brown are willing to join our ongoing quest for quick and decisive action by Congress and the Administration.”