Friday, January 6, 2017

Gov. Hogan Vetoes "Sunshine Tax"

Clean-energy backers rally for override of Hogan veto

The sponsors of legislation that would increase the amount of energy Maryland utility customers get from renewable sources called Thursday on the General Assembly to override Gov. Larry Hogan‘s veto of that bill.

The legislature could consider overturning Hogan’s veto as early as next week, when lawmakers gather in Annapolis for their annual 90-day session.

The governor showed this week he was ready for a fight on the issue. He labeled the measure a “sunshine tax” because it would — for a period of years — require rate increases to pay for the additional cost of wind and solar power.

Proponents countered that the increases would cost ratepayers no more than 58 cents a month. They argue that the extra costs would be temporary and would be offset by a boost to Maryland’s economy caused by increased investment in “clean energy” jobs.

Kevin Sheen, spokesman for the solar and wind power company Empower, estimated rates would be slightly higher for five to seven years before savings outweigh costs.

Amelia Chasse, a spokeswoman for Hogan, said the governor has consistently supported efforts that promote clean air and clean water. “However, the governor will not do this at the expense of Maryland’s ratepayers,” Chasse said.
Hogan and his allies got a lot of mileage out of labeling the tax on impermeable surfaces as the "rain tax." I suspect he's hoping for the same sort of response here.

When renewables are truly competitive with other power sources, I expect they will do quite well. In the meantime, they are substantially more expensive, and require massive subsidization.

Some greenies are predicting that renewable energy will become cheaper than carbon. I'm OK with the.

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