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By Rebecca Kern
The Senate June 26 approved Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Kristine Svinicki for a third term at the agency, just days before her current term expired.
The Senate voted 88 to 9 to confirm Svinicki for another five-year term at the independent nuclear regulatory agency.
Svinicki’s current five-year term is set to expire on June 30. If the Senate hadn’t acted quickly to confirm her, the NRC would have lost its quorum.
President Donald Trump named Svinicki chairman in January. She started out as an NRC commissioner in March 2008 under the George W. Bush administration, and was sworn in for a second term during the Obama administration in June 2012.
The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee will vote June 28 on the two remaining Republican NRC commissioners nominated by the Trump administration: Annie Caputo, a longtime energy policy adviser for the committee, and David Wright, a former chairman of the South Carolina Public Service Commission. The committee has not yet scheduled votes on those nominations.
The NRC licenses and regulates the country’s nuclear reactors. Its five commissioners serve staggered five-year terms, with three seats belonging to the political party in power in the White House. It currently has three commissioners: Svinicki; Stephen Burns (I), the previous chairman in the Obama administration; and Jeff Baran (D).
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