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John F. Povilaitis

John F. Povilaitis


Autonomous and Connected Vehicles Practice Group Co-Leader

Harrisburg, PA

John F. Povilaitis focuses his practice on administrative law matters with special emphasis on energy, communications, water/wastewater and transportation public utility law. His practice ranges from proactive counseling to litigation before administrative agencies, and appellate matters before state and federal courts.

With nearly 20 years of service for the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PaPUC), John has significant regulatory experience in electricity, natural gas, water, transportation and communications law. After joining the Commission in 1978, he served as assistant counsel, federal division deputy chief counsel and first deputy chief counsel before assuming the position of chief counsel in 1989. John served as the Commission's counsel in the litigation that established the Pike County Doctrine.

In 1998, he joined Ryan, Russell, Ogden & Seltzer PC, a Central Pennsylvania-based law firm that primarily handled various public utility matters. John concentrated his practice on state and federal regulatory proceedings, legislative activities, litigation before state and federal courts, facilities siting proceedings, land use and eminent domain matters and complex commercial transactions.

Previously, John served as chairperson of the Pennsylvania Bar Association's Public Utility Law Section and as editor of the Section newsletter.

Since 1990, he has been a course planner and speaker at the Pennsylvania Bar Institute's biannual Public Utility Law Conference and more recently he has served as a course planner for the biannual PaPUC Bench Bar Conference.

Most recently, John has:

  • Represented a major Pennsylvania electric distribution company in its smart meter and energy efficiency and conservation regulatory proceedings. Counseled a Motor Carrier Trade Association on PaPUC jurisdiction.
  • Represented a client seeking PaPUC paratransit authority.
  • Represented clients in appeals before the Commonwealth Court. Represented clients in natural gas regulatory proceedings.
  • Represented communications carriers in mergers and other regulatory proceedings.
  • Counseled water and wastewater utilities and authorities on various regulatory issues.

John has been consecutively selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® list since 2017 under the categories of Communications Law and Energy Law; and since 2023 in the Utility Law category. In 2017 and 2022, he was selected as The Best Lawyers in America® Energy Law “Lawyer of the Year" in Harrisburg.