House Republicans Unveil ‘Marcellus Works’ Proposal
HARRISBURG – House Republican Policy Committee Chairman Stan Saylor (R-York) and members of the House Republican Caucus today unveiled a package of legislation called “Marcellus Works,” which is designed to secure Pennsylvania’s energy future and create thousands of new jobs by creating incentives for the use of the clean natural gas which is plentiful under Pennsylvania’s large Marcellus Shale formation.
“Pennsylvania has an abundant supply of clean natural gas,” said Saylor. “By creating incentives to use that natural gas, we will increase demand, and as a result, we will help create thousands of jobs not only in the natural gas industry but also in related fields like the infrastructure, manufacturing, and service sectors. In addition, we will reduce Pennsylvania’s dependence on oil, thereby reducing emissions from carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide, and non-methane hydrocarbons. This is a win-win for everyone.”
Saylor noted the initial investment of $55 to $60 million which will come from taxes already imposed on the industry will result in thousands of long-term jobs for Pennsylvanians.
“The Marcellus Shale industry produced $389 million in state and local tax revenue in 2009 alone, and is expected to pay close to $800 million this year,” Saylor said. “Our plan would use a portion of that revenue to create thousands of jobs.”
The lawmakers noted the “Marcellus Works” plan includes four key components.
1. Transition State Vehicles to Clean Natural Gas
Currently, Pennsylvania has more than 16,000 vehicles in its state fleet. Transitioning the state fleet to clean natural gas vehicles would greatly reduce the Commonwealth’s reliance on oil and create a tremendous demand for the natural gas available right here in Pennsylvania.
2. Provide Tax Credits for Clean Natural Gas Vehicles and Infrastructure
Providing tax credits to private entities that convert their fleets to clean natural gas and to public and private entities that construct and use clean natural gas fueling stations will provide another incentive for the use of Pennsylvania’s abundant supply of clean natural gas. The “Marcellus Works” plan would also provide incentives to create a clean natural gas infrastructure including natural gas filling stations and storage tanks.
3. Government Conversion Grants
Local governments across Pennsylvania also have fleets comprising hundreds of cars, trucks, and other equipment. The Marcellus Works plan would provide incentive grants to local governments to encourage them to convert those fleets to clean natural gas vehicles.
In addition, the “Marcellus Works” plan would provide incentive grants to encourage mass transit systems to convert their fleets to clean natural gas, reducing their reliance on oil and increasing demand for the clean natural gas we can produce here in the Commonwealth.
4. Clean Natural Gas Stations on the Pennsylvania Turnpike
The “Marcellus Works” proposal would make the Pennsylvania Turnpike a “Clean Natural Gas Corridor” across the Commonwealth by constructing clean natural gas stations at every other service station. Making clean natural gas available along the turnpike will encourage its use by the millions of drivers who regularly use the turnpike. In addition, it will create thousands of jobs for people who will construct and man the stations.
“The formula is very simple,” Saylor concluded. “Pennsylvania’s abundant supply of gas plus a large demand for natural gas in Pennsylvania will equal jobs for Pennsylvanians. I hope my colleagues on both sides of the aisle will join us in supporting this effort to secure Pennsylvania’s energy future.”
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