Ben has 15 years of experience in the areas of administrative law, public utility and regulatory law, municipal law, governmental affairs, corporate and business law, and general litigation. Smith Legal LLC is an Augusta law firm serving clients in a wide range of regulatory, municipal, and government related matters.
Ben graduated cum laude from the University of Maine at Orono in 2000 and earned his law degree from the University of Maine School of Law in 2004.
Ben began his practice in 2004 at a small law firm in Augusta where he handled all types of general litigation, including civil, criminal, municipal, and administrative matters. Ben appeared regularly in all of Maine’s state and federal courts and before state and regulatory administrative bodies. Ben tried and won his first jury trial within the first six months of practice. He appealed his first case to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court, also obtaining a favorable outcome, within his first year of practice.
In 2008, he left private practice and joined the Maine Public Utilities Commission where he gained first-hand experience in energy and utility matters falling under the Commission’s jurisdiction. As a staff attorney and hearing examiner, Ben handled ratemaking, rate design, certificate of public convenience and necessity (CPCN), reorganization, affiliated interest, and other matters involving Maine’s various electric, gas, telecommunications, and other public utilities. He also represented the Commission in wholesale electric matters before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the regional stakeholder process.
In 2014, Ben returned to private practice where he continues to represent natural gas, electric, water utilities and other entities before the Commission and other state regulatory bodies. He represents utilities in affiliate transactions, mergers and reorganizations, rate proceedings, including natural gas cost of gas and capacity recovery, rulemakings, investigations, and other matters. Ben also advises entities with regulatory matters involving the Commission’s jurisdiction over telecommunications carriers.
Ben also assists private developers and other entities in land use and environmental permitting applications and matters before the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, Maine Land Use Planning Commission and various municipalities. Ben assists parties in conducting due diligence in connection with large acquisitions and mergers, and has negotiated firm gas transportation agreements and natural gas supply agreements.
Ben lives in Chelsea, Maine, where he is active in his community. He has previously chaired and served on the town's board of selectmen, board of assessors, and also chaired the committee formed in 2012 that drafted and proposed for adoption a new municipal charter for the town. Ben has also served as a volunteer basketball coach for the Youth Basketball League of Kennebec Valley YMCA, Augusta, Maine.
Ben received his J.D. from the University of Maine School of Law and his B.A., cum laude, from the University of Maine. He is admitted to practice in the state courts of Maine, the U.S. District Court for the District of Maine, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.
In his leisure time, Ben enjoys flying, carpentry, hunting, fishing, hiking, running, and other outdoor activities. He is also a Registered Maine Guide in the areas of hunting, fishing and wilderness recreation and a licensed private pilot.
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