House Democratic lawmakers today unveiled the Clean Energy Jobs Act, their proposal to protect existing jobs, grow new ones and invest in Ohio’s clean energy future. The announcement follows the latest changes to House Bill (HB) 6, which Republican lawmakers amended to bail out more corporations and all but eliminate energy efficiency and renewable energy standards in Ohio. The bill passed out of committee Thursday.
“HB 6 is a total flip-flop that started by calling itself a clean air bill and evolved to be a corporate welfare bill that bails out a failing Indiana coal plant,” said Assistant Minority Leader Kristin Boggs (D-Columbus).
HB 6 guts energy standards and raises monthly rates for consumers without any promise that current workers are protected.
The revised HB 6 also forces Ohio ratepayers to pay millions of dollars to bail out a failing coal-burning power plant in Indiana over the next decade.
Democrats detailed their own Clean Energy Jobs Act, which is already backed by more than two-dozen members.
“Democrats have been at the table working in good faith with Republicans to find common ground on a statewide energy policy that can have bipartisan support,” said Rep. Sedrick Denson (D-Cincinnati), joint sponsor of the Clean Energy Jobs Act and lead Democrat on the House Energy panel. “We remain committed to finding that common ground, but Republicans rejected our offers to compromise. We owe it to taxpayers to find a better solution that protects good paying jobs, grows new ones and moves our state forward. That’s why we’re introducing the Clean Energy Jobs Act.”
The Clean Energy Jobs Act would:
—Protect existing jobs and grows new ones in emerging sectors of the economy.
—Have neutral tax impacts on businesses and consumers.
—Strengthen Ohio’s clean energy future.
“My constituents didn’t send me to Columbus to preserve the status quo, but to fight for a cleaner future,” said Rep. Casey Weinstein (D-Hudson), the Clean Energy Jobs Act’s other joint sponsor. “Our bill does that.”
Democrats say the Ohio Clean Energy Jobs Act restores the promise of better jobs and brighter futures, giving the next generation of Ohio workers the opportunity to compete for the jobs of tomorrow.
“Republicans have refused attempts to make HB 6 better, and this latest version forces Ohio ratepayers to pay millions of dollars over the next decade to bail out a failing coal-burning power plant in the state of Indiana. It’s a bad deal that kills jobs, subsidizes failing out-of-state corporations and takes us backward,” said Rep. David Leland (D-Columbus). “We owe it to taxpayers to live up to our promise that we work for them. Our Ohio Clean Energy Jobs Act invests in a framework for the future that protects existing jobs, grows new ones and moves Ohio forward toward a clean energy economy.”
Republicans on the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee Thursday failed to include any of the Democratic provisions in the final version of HB 6, passing it out of committee without Democratic support.