House Republican leaders have decided against combining the energy jurisdictions of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the House Natural Resources Committee into one committee -- the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

The presumptive chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA), had proposed the marriage of the two committees last month, saying that the time was ripe for this change in committee structure as Republicans become the majority in the House in the next Congress (see Daily GPI, Nov. 23).

"The transition from the minority to the majority offered a unique opportunity to consider bold proposals such as consolidating energy jurisdictions into one House committee. I give credit and thanks to Speaker-designate [John] Boehner [R-OH] for allowing there to be a thoughtful discussion on this proposal over the past weeks and few days," Hastings said.

He said he looked forward to working with Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), who was named chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee last week (see Daily GPI, Dec. 9).

The Energy and Commerce Committee controls health care, interstate commerce, technology, telecommunications, the Federal Drug Administration, consumer protection and energy. It specifically oversees the Department of Energy and general energy policy, including oil, natural gas, nuclear, and renewable power.

The House Natural Resources Committee oversees all energy development on federal lands and offshore: oil, natural gas, hydropower, wind, solar, coal, geothermal, uranium and minerals.

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