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CALIFORNIA CLIMATE TAX PUT ON HOLD UNTIL NOVEMBER

California’s march to Energy Utopia hit a delay yesterday when state officials decided not to start collecting million in fees from energy companies until learning the fate of Proposition 23 in the November election.
 
Proposition 23, put on the ballot by business and taxpayer groups, would suspend enforcement of the 2006 Global Warming Solutions Act, which compels the state to reduce carbon emissions by 25 percent and increase renewable energy sources to 33 percent by 2020.  The ballot initiative would suspend enforcement of AB 32 until state unemployment has fallen below 5.5 percent for four consecutive quarters. Californias unemployment rate now stands at 12.3 percent, third highest in the nation.
 
Early polls show Prop 23 losing in November by 48-to-36 percent.
 
The California Air Resources Board is empowered to collect the $63 million to start enforcing various provisions of its own devise, including a cap-and-trade system and a renewable portfolio standard.  The CARB has already taken early initiatives by banning fluorocarbons in do-it-yourself tire inflation devices, mandating methane collection at landfill sites and requiring auto mechanics to inflate motorists tires when they make repairs.  Nuclear power plays no part in the Air Resources Boards plans.
 
Business and taxpayers groups delayed collection of the fee last year when they sued over the transparency of the process.  The state prevailed in that case but then it became clear that CARB could not start assessing until the fees were designated in the state budget.  The legislature, facing a $40 billion deficit, has not yet adopted a 2010-2011 budget.  Seeing no early resolution, CARB has decided to postpone collection until after the election.

Read more at the Sacramento Bee

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