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24 Util. Sec. Newsl.: Periodic Rep. Members Sec. Pub. Util. L. A.B.A. 1 (1983-1984)

handle is hein.journals/infrastr24 and id is 1 raw text is: UTTLITY SETINJNWSLTTE
A Periodic Report to the Members of the Section of Public Utility Law of the Amn'er  #4.Association
Page 1
Vol. 24                  No. I                October 1, 1983
The Chairman's Statement
It is a great privilege for me to assume the Chairmanship of our Section. Bill Curtin,
my immediate predecessor, has set an exceptionally high standard of performance ift,
the job. Not only did he provide most effective leadership in the handling of our affairs,
but he also took an active interest in the debate on the proposed Beckham Amendment
to the ABA Constitution. As you know, that debate Led to a compromise under which a
Special Commission on Association Governance was appointed; that Commission is to
report no later than the February, 1984 Mid-Year Meeting. In any event, Bill Curtin
will be a tough act to follow, but I pledge that I will do my best. If you will forgive
me a personal indulgence, I might note my pride in the appointment of my partner,
Justin A. Stanley, as Chairman of the Special Commission. You will recall that Justin
also served as Chairman of our Section and as President of the Association.
It also gives me great pride to report that John P. Vukasin, who served as our Chair-
man two years ago, having been confirmed by the U.S. Senate, has taken his seat as
Judge on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.
During the last year, we were deeply saddened by the untimely death of Mark Garling-
house, another of our past Chairmen, and our Section Delegate to the House of Dele-
gates. George R. Perrine, a past Chairman, who had served for many years as our
Section Delegate, gave generously of his time and effort to step into the breach on an in-
terim basis. Harold L. Russell, also a past Chairman, has now begun serving as our
Section Delegate; he too was an active and constructive participant in the Beckham Amend-
ment governance debate.
We also suffered the Loss this year of our good friend, William R. Brown, who died sud-
denly during the April meeting of our Council. Bill Brown served with distinction in a
number of leadership positions in the Section.
In keeping with the appropriate tradition of not allowing past Chairmen to fade away,
Bill Curtin is serving as Chairman of our 1985 London Meeting Committee. He is hard
at work on this project, and I am confident that we will have a program of professional
and social activities that will make that meeting attractive to all of you.
This is another of those so-called interesting periods for public utility lawyers.
Actually, I cannot recall a time that was not interesting for us, but, as I suggested to
a meeting of our Young Lawyers Committee in Atlanta, many of our clients' problems
today arise from excess capacity or supply as opposed to the more familiar problems that
arise from shortages. Think about it. The gas bubble has imposed significant strains
on producers, pipelines and distribution utilities; electric generating facilities proposed or
even under construction are being deferred or cancelled; airline fare wars erupt regularly
as carriers struggle for market share; many railroads and motor carriers are similarly
situated. The telecommunications industry might or might not have excess capacity -- it
is probably too early in the restructuring process to tell. All of those problems are of
course reflected in our daily work as practicing lawyers. The movement, even if tempor-
ary, from shortage to surplus has created lots of legal work, and some unique legal pro-
blems. (Please turn to page 2J

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