Final Decision On Keystone May Not Come Till 2014

That’s because the results of an investigation into an alleged conflict of interest won’t be out until January.

Keystone Pipeline
National Journal
Clare Foran
Aug. 23, 2013, 11:42 a.m.

The State De­part­ment’s Of­fice of In­spect­or Gen­er­al an­nounced Fri­day it does not ex­pect to re­lease the res­ults of an in­vest­ig­a­tion in­to a pos­sible con­flict of in­terest in the de­part­ment’s Key­stone XL pipeline re­view un­til Janu­ary — a move that could delay a fi­nal de­cision on the pro­ject un­til next year.

Earli­er this month, the OIG began an in­quiry in­to al­leg­a­tions made by the Si­erra Club and oth­er en­vir­on­ment­al groups that En­vir­on­ment­al Re­sources Man­age­ment, a con­sult­ing firm hired to pro­duce the draft en­vir­on­ment­al im­pact state­ment for the pipeline, had ties to Tran­sCanada Corp. and the Amer­ic­an Pet­ro­leum In­sti­tute, two or­gan­iz­a­tions with a key stake in the pro­ject.

Tran­sCanada Corp. is the com­pany set to build Key­stone, and the Amer­ic­an Pet­ro­leum In­sti­tute is a trade as­so­ci­ation, which pub­licly sup­ports the pipeline.

The con­flict-of-in­terest in­quiry and the State De­part­ment’s re­view of the pipeline have been on­go­ing, and State has not yet said when it will make a fi­nal de­term­in­a­tion on Key­stone XL. But Fri­day’s an­nounce­ment that the OIG in­vest­ig­a­tion res­ults won’t be re­leased un­til Janu­ary makes it likely that a de­cision on the pro­ject will be pushed back to 2014.

“It is our hope to con­clude work by the end of the year and re­lease a re­port in Janu­ary,” Douglas Welty, a spokes­man for the OIG, said in an e-mail Fri­day. “As to the tim­ing of the de­part­ment’s de­cision — you need to ask them dir­ectly wheth­er our work will have any im­pact on that.”

A State De­part­ment of­fi­cial did not im­me­di­ately re­spond to a re­quest for com­ment.

Any ad­di­tion­al delays are sure to prompt an out­cry from con­gres­sion­al Re­pub­lic­ans, who have long ac­cused the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion of ty­ing the pro­ject up in red tape as a con­ces­sion to the Demo­crat­ic party’s en­vir­on­ment­al wing. The pipeline was ini­tially sched­uled for a fi­nal de­cision be­fore the 2012 pres­id­en­tial elec­tion, but the ad­min­is­tra­tion pushed it back last year, say­ing at the time that the en­vir­on­ment­al con­sequences mer­ited fur­ther in­quiry.

MOST READ
What We're Following See More »
BUT HE’S NOT ADVOCATING FOR IT
Grassley Open to Lame Duck Hearings on Garland
14 hours ago
THE LATEST

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said Monday he'd now be willing to hold a hearing on Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland in a lame-duck session of Congress. While he said he wouldn't push for it, he said if "Hillary Clinton wins the White House, and a majority of senators convinced him to do so," he would soften his previous opposition.

Source:
DOWN FROM POST-CONVENTION NUMBERS
Monmouth Has Clinton Up Seven
18 hours ago
THE LATEST

In a new Monmouth University poll, 46% of likely voters support Clinton and 39% back Trump, with 7% supporting Libertarian Gary Johnson, and 2% backing Jill Stein of the Green Party. That's down from a poll taken right after the Democratic convention, in which Clinton led by 13 points.

Source:
DEBATE PREP
Clinton Advisers Talking to Psychologists, Trump Ghostwriter
18 hours ago
THE LATEST

“Hillary Clinton’s advisers are talking to Donald J. Trump’s ghostwriter of The Art of the Deal, seeking insights about Mr. Trump’s deepest insecurities as they devise strategies to needle and undermine him in four weeks at the first presidential debate, the most anticipated in a generation. ... Her team is also getting advice from psychology experts to help create a personality profile of Mr. Trump to gauge how he may respond to attacks and deal with a woman as his sole adversary on the debate stage.”

EPI-PEN PRICES
House Committee Investigating Mylan
21 hours ago
THE LATEST

The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has requested documents from the CEO of Mylan, "the pharmaceutical company under fire after raising the price of EpiPens more than 400 percent since 2007." Meanwhile, top members of the Energy and Commerce Committee are pressing the FDA on the lack of generic competition for EpiPens.

Source:
×