Press Releases

PUC Hosts Mid-May “Smart Hearings” to Gather Public Input on Laurel Pipe Line Application

May 01, 2017

HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) reminded consumers and other concerned parties about two upcoming “Smart Hearings” on May 16, to gather public comment on an application by Laurel Pipe Line Company, L.P. (Laurel) for approval to change direction of petroleum products transportation service to delivery points west of the Altoona area.

Smart Hearings

The Smart Hearings, conducted by Administrative Law Judge Eranda Vero, will be held at the PUC’s headquarters in Harrisburg, at the following times:

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 – 1 p.m. and 6 p.m.
Commonwealth Keystone Building
Hearing Room 1
400 North Street
Harrisburg, PA  17120

PUC Smart Hearings are broadcast live on the PUC website and enable residents and concerned parties throughout Pennsylvania to see and hear the testimony being offered without the need to attend the hearings in person.

Witnesses are able to offer their comments by telephone, from the convenience of their homes, offices, or other locations, to be included in the live Internet stream and considered as part of the Commission’s review. In-person testimony at the Harrisburg hearing site also will be included, for those who prefer to comment in that manner. Individuals will have the option of not having their testimony live-streamed, if they prefer.

Note: Individuals wishing to testify at the hearings by telephone must contact the PUC’s Office of Administrative Law Judge (OALJ) at 717-787-1399 and provide contact information no later than Monday, May 8, 2017.

Attendance in person requires no prior action, simply show up and sign in. 

Laurel Application

Laurel submitted an application to the Commission on November 16, 2016, requesting all necessary authority and approvals from the PUC, to the extent required, to authorize Laurel to change the direction of its petroleum products transportation service over a portion of its system, west of its Eldorado facility, located in the Altoona area.

According to their application, Laurel currently transports petroleum products from east to west – from points of origin near Philadelphia to destinations across the state, terminating west of Pittsburgh, where it connects to pipelines originating from a number of refineries located in the Midwest. A portion of the capacity of the pipeline is also used to transport petroleum products from New Jersey and Delaware to destinations in Pennsylvania.

Laurel’s application notes that expanding refining capacity in the Midwest has led to a number of shippers indicating an interest in transporting petroleum products to destinations in Western and Central Pennsylvania. Laurel is proposing to reverse the flow on part of the Western Pennsylvania portion of its pipeline system, allowing petroleum products to move eastward, toward the Altoona area.

Offering Comment at a Hearing

Members of the public are welcome to attend the hearings and provide comments. Their testimony will become part of the record on which the PUC will issue its final decision.

The PUC offers tips on how to participate, including:

  • Prepare what you are going to say beforehand.  Even though it is not required, you may want to write out your statement, which can be read.
  • Bring copies, if you are attending an in-person hearing.  If you have a written statement you would like to give to the judge as evidence, please bring two copies for the court reporter and several copies for the other participants.
  • Plan to be questioned.  Parties in the case may want to ask you a question to clarify something you said.

About the PUC

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission balances the needs of consumers and utilities; ensures safe and reliable utility service at reasonable rates; protects the public interest; educates consumers to make independent and informed utility choices; furthers economic development; and fosters new technologies and competitive markets in an environmentally sound manner.

For recent news releases and video of select Commission proceedings or more information about the PUC, visit our website at Follow the PUC on Twitter – @PA_PUC for all things utility.  “Like” Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission on Facebook for easy access to information on utility issues.

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Docket No.: A-2016-2575829

Contact:Nils Hagen-Frederiksen
Press Secretary

Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission
Press Office
P.O. Box 3265, Harrisburg, PA 17105-3265
(717) 787-5722 FAX (717) 787-4193

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