Re-posted from VT Digger 05/11/2012:
Legislative wrap up: Energy stances on renewable investments, merger payback, opt-out fee for smart meters and state transmission ownership lost steam.
The most prominent energy issues in the Vermont Legislature this year seem to be the ones that didn’t happen.
For what seemed like half the session, lawmakers quibbled over whether to intervene in a Public Service Board docket to require utilities to give $21 million in windfall money to ratepayers. That legislation never came to fruition.
The House spent a large part of the session polishing a law that would require the state’s utilities to purchase set amounts of renewable energy. That big energy bill barely made it through, and when it did, the renewable energy mandate was stripped out.
And the state led the nation in banning the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas.
In the end, the Legislature passed an energy bill and decided not to meddle in the affairs of the Public Service Board. And it sent a resounding message to the natural gas industry: frack no.
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