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Local Delegation To Oppose Bill That Would Phase Out Credits Important To The Luke Mill

February 26th, 2014 by WCBC Radio

State Senator George Edwards said this week that the local delegation is again opposing a bill that would phase out certain credits important to the Luke paper mill.  Some environmental groups say the credits are not an environmentally sound policy. The Cumberland Times News reports that while the bill makes some provisions to protect the mill, the negative effects of House Bill 747 and Senate Bill 734 outweigh the benefits.  The Allegany County Chamber of Commerce is also opposing the bills. Chamber officials have written to the chairmen of the House and Senate committees considering the bills. The bill changes a list of renewable energy sources and phases out the Luke paper plant’s eligibility for renewable energy credits. The energy credits can be traded and sold. The Renewable Energy Credits are currently available to the Luke mill and there are two tiers to the credits. The ones of most importance would be phased out in 2018 under the bills. The credits are offered for so-called “black liquor,” a byproduct of the paper-making process that can be burned for energy. The credits essentially create income for the mill. Allegany County Commissioner Bill Valentine…


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