Affordable electricity essential to Alabama

Published 2:51 pm Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Dear Editor,

If some Washington politicians have their way, the people of Alabama will soon be paying a lot more for electricity. That’s why PACE, a coalition of Alabama manufacturers, workers, and consumers, applauds the leadership of Rep. Spencer Bachus.

Just a few short weeks ago, Rep. Henry Waxman, a California legislator who chairs the House Energy Committee, offered a bill that would fundamentally change the way our nation generates, pays for, and distributes electricity.

While the bill is great for some regions, the Southeast would clearly be hit hard, threatening jobs and working families.

Recognizing the bill’s potential impact, Spencer Bachus pulled together the other six members of Alabama’s House delegation to call for changes to the bill.

On May 18, all seven members signed a letter to Rep. Waxman that outlined their concerns. The result was that Republicans and Democrats alike disregarded partisan politics and, instead, spoke with one voice on behalf of all of those in Alabama whose future depends on affordable electricity.

The so-called American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 sponsored by Chairman Waxman and supported by other members of Congress from the West, such as Nancy Pelosi, is bad news for Alabama and the Southeast.

The bill would mandate energy sources that aren’t economical and burden coal-intensive manufacturing states with a financial scheme that drastically hikes our power bills. When all is said and done, the bill would essentially create a ‘light switch tax’ that working families and businesses can’t afford in these economic times.

Thank you, Rep. Bachus, for taking the lead in speaking the truth about the economic train wreck that would result from this new energy takeover by Washington.

Just like our delegation, PACE supports the inclusion of hydroelectricity, clean coal, and nuclear that will give us clean energy that we can afford. We are behind you 100 percent in the fight for energy fairness.