Let’s get fiscal: 4 highlights from the 2019-2020 Fiscal Code bill

Let’s get fiscal: 4 highlights from the 2019-2020 Fiscal Code bill

A wide-ranging Fiscal Code bill was sent to Gov. Tom Wolf’s desk Thursday, bringing the 2019-2020 budget one step closer to enactment.

The legislation, which helps outline specifics of the annual spending plan, passed the House and the Senate on Thursday, setting in place procedures that could affect environmental policy, energy costs, and the state’s preparedness for emergencies.
Thursday, June 27, 2019/Author: Justin Sweitzer
Categories: News and Views
House committee hears contrarian climate change viewpoint

House committee hears contrarian climate change viewpoint

Wednesday’s House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee meeting was marked by a unique guest — geologist and climate skeptic Gregory Wrightstone, who urged House lawmakers to look past a 97-percent scientific consensus and come to their own science-based conclusions on the climate change debate.
 
Wrightstone was invited by Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler), chairman of the committee, to offer a contrarian viewpoint to the greater climate change discussion. An author and a former consultant for the natural gas industry, Wrightstone said the 97-percent consensus reached by actively publishing climate scientists has been “completely discredited” and made up of “lies and inaccuracies.”
Wednesday, March 27, 2019/Author: Justin Sweitzer
Categories: News and Views
Skeptics decry 'bailout,' as nuclear advocates formally roll out plan to save state's power plants

Skeptics decry 'bailout,' as nuclear advocates formally roll out plan to save state's power plants

After weeks of speculation, lawmakers formerly unveiled Monday a proposal to devote millions of dollars to boosting the state’s nuclear power plants, but the measure is likely to prompt heated debate over what critics consider to be a bailout of the nuclear energy industry.

The plan, touted by Rep. Thomas Mahaffie (R-Dauphin) and other nuclear advocates, say their plan would add nuclear power to the state’s Alternative Energy Portfolio, putting it on the same level as wind or solar energy. They argue it is necessary to save upwards of 16,000 jobs, as well as help the state achieve its clean energy and economic goals. 

Monday, March 11, 2019/Author: Andrew Bahl
Categories: News and Views
Fees, climate change sticking points in House Environmental Resources hearing

Fees, climate change sticking points in House Environmental Resources hearing

Fees collected by the state Department of Environmental Protection and the ongoing debate on the effects of climate change are slated to be major issues for the House Environmental Resources committee this session, if a Tuesday hearing with top DEP staff is any indication.

DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell presented his agency’s budget overview before the committee but spent most of his time fielding questions from members related to how his program spends money gained from fees it charges for permit applications, including for companies seeking to drill in the Marcellus Shale formation.
Tuesday, February 19, 2019/Author: Andrew Bahl
Categories: News and Views
With TMI closure ticking down, General Assembly looks into nuclear deal

With TMI closure ticking down, General Assembly looks into nuclear deal

State lawmakers and politicos are preparing for an early session fight over the future of Pennsylvania’s nuclear power industry, the second biggest in all fifty states.

“It’s the worst kind of legislative challenge,” Sen. Ryan Aument (R-Lancaster), co-chair of the state’s bipartisan Nuclear Caucus said. “It’s complicated, costly, urgent and irreversible.”

Allies of the industry have coalesced around a report, issued by the Nuclear Energy Caucus, which projects significant environmental and economic problems if the state’s nuclear plants falter in the coming years.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: News and Views
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