A bill before the Washington Legislature would authorize Colstrip’s largest owner, Puget Sound Energy, to file a plan to decommission Colstrip’s two oldest units. Montana Sen. Rick Ripley warned that if the bill passes, Montana lawmakers would likely call a special session to propose legislation to protect Montana’s economy from the effect of a partial shutdown.
Tuesday’s surprising move by the U.S. Supreme Court is a blow to Obama and a victory for the coalition of 27 mostly Republican-led states and industry opponents, who call the regulations “an unprecedented power grab.” By issuing the temporary freeze, a 5-4 majority of the justices signaled that opponents made strong arguments against the rules. The high court’s four liberal justices said they would have denied the request for delay.
Toxic cleanup projects are facing a shortfall of $44.3 million. Senate Bill 6570, sponsored by Senator Ericksen, would “delay MTCA funding to lower priority programs in order to fully fund toxic cleanup.” The Model Toxics Control Act (MTCA) was passed by voters in 1988 to generate revenue for toxic cleanups throughout the state. Primarily paid by oil companies, it didn’t generate much revenue at first. But, skyrocketing oil prices turned the fund into a revenue generating machine that has been repeatedly used to shore up the state’s
Kelly Susewind, water-quality program manager for the state Department of Ecology, said the proposed rules, released Wednesday, strike the right balance between the state’s earlier proposed standards and a rule issued by the federal Environmental Protection Agency last year after the state failed to meet deadlines to act.
Washington State, land of progressives, cannabis, marriage equality and carbon taxes. Oh, and a demand for a 2/3’s vote on tax increases or new taxes. What will they do when a tax on carbon and green house gas production is before them, and opposed by Big Labor, business and the State Democrat party? November is a light-year away.
When it comes to proposed legislation including the Colstrip power plant closure bill, SB 6248, it’s important to remember that the decisions of a few, in this case in Washington State, could result in a costly ripple effect stretching far and wide. It would start predominantly in our own districts in Montana, and ultimately touch communities throughout this region of the U.S.
Joe Ryan, Co-Chair of the Yes on I-732 Campaign, respond’s to the Washington State Labor Council’s opposition to I-732. Ryan says, “By shifting the tax burden onto carbon pollution and away from regressive and burdensome taxes that hurt families and businesses, I-732 focuses on encouraging cleaner energy solutions and putting money back in the pockets of Washington state families and businesses.” He and Carbon WA also disagree with the Office of Financial Management’s financial assessment.
Saturday, during its 2016 winter meeting, the Washington State Democratic Party went on record as opposed to CarbonWA’s I-732, joining the Washington State Labor Council and IAM’s District Lodge 751 in the no camp. I-732 is a complex tax swap proposal that would levy a carbon tax while also reducing sales and business & occupation taxes.