SWPA House Republican to Introduce PA ‘Clean Power Plan’

PA Rep. John Maher

That wily Pennsylvania House Rep. John Maher (Allegheny & Washington Counties) is doing it again. Maher, a Republican, is the guy who came up with the brilliant plan to rename PA’s impact fee to a “severance tax”–because the impact fee is the rough equivalent of a severance tax (see PA House Ctte Votes to Rename “Impact Fee” to “Severance Tax”). The measure, which did not make it to the House floor for a vote, was intended to point out that the Marcellus industry in PA is already taxed–just as much (or more) than if it were called a severance tax. Maher is doing it again. Jumping on the (very good) news that President Trump is dismantling Obama’s odious Clean Power Plan (CPP)–a plan that favors so-called renewables over coal and natural gas for power generation–Maher is proposing a Pennsylvania Clean Power Plan. There are no details as yet. Maher has sent out a memo (copy below) to his fellow lawmakers asking them to join him in sponsoring such a plan–details and a meeting to come later. At first blush you might think Maher has defected to the dark side, proposing that PA stick it’s collective finger in President Trump’s eye in an act of defiance by adopting its own mini-version of the Obama CPP. We don’t think that’s what is happening at all. We think Maher’s CPP will focus on letting the free market figure out how best to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. We have no doubt natural gas will play a starring role in Maher’s version of a CPP…

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