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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

 10:55 AM 

Assembly committee will exec on CEJA

The Assembly Special Committee on Clean Energy Jobs will exec at 10 a.m. tomorrow on the Clean Energy Jobs Act. The meeting will be held at 415 Northwest in the state Capitol.

A substitute amendment introduced yesterday drops low-carbon fuel requirements, California vehicle emission standards, a non-severability clause in the section on nuclear power plants, and a boiler inspection and efficiency requirement that had been a concern for many industrial facilities.

It also tweaked language on the renewable mandates to allow energy efficiency projects to count toward the requirements and continues to include the 25 percent renewable energy standards by 2025 Gov. Jim Doyle has been pushing.

See a Legislative Council memo on the sub here.

State Rep. Spencer Black, one of the bill's authors and a co-chair of the Assembly committee, said the bill will create jobs, hold down utility rates and "clean the air."

"The substitute amendment will garner wide support because it will not only improve our environment but improve our economy," he said.

Critics of the bill said the most expensive pieces of the legislation remain.

Todd Stuart, executive director of the Wisconsin Industrial Energy Group, said it appeared negotiators pulled out the provisions that were "no brainers and non-starters." He was also disappointed no provisions were added to provide relief to consumers if the requirements prove more expensive than anticipated.

"I'm blown away by the fact there's really no cost containment safety valve in here, nothing," he said. "After months and even years of debate of costs, costs, costs, not to see a cost safety valve embedded in the bill is just stunning."

Black said he expects committee action in the Assembly and Senate this week and is still holding to his prediction that it will pass by the last day of the legislative session, April 22, which is Earth Day.


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