The National Energy Board's Joint Review Panel will be making a return visit to Prince George in 2013.
Panel chairwoman Sheila Leggett said Wednesday that more time will be needed to complete the final hearings into the environmental assessment for the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline currently underway at the Columbus Community Centre on Domano Blvd.
As it stands the panel will hold hearings Thursday and Friday before taking a week long break and returning to Prince George on Oct. 29 for two more weeks of hearings at the Ramada.
The process so far has been slow, with many of the interveners going over their estimated time for questioning of Northern Gateway witnesses, which means its unlikely all the questions will be asked by Nov. 9, when the panel was supposed to wrap up the local hearings.
Just when the panel returns has yet to be determined, but Leggett said a new schedule will be released by the middle of November.
Leggett also said more hearing dates will be added for Prince Rupert in the new year. The panel was already planning to go to the coastal community next month.
Leggett said the extra dates won't have an impact on the panel's ability to have its report completed by the end of 2013. However in a letter posted to the review panel's website she did express concern that the process could be delayed if someone took the panel to court.