Senator Yudichak, Senator Argall, Representative Heffley and Representative Kaufer Supportive of Waste Coal Provisions in State Budget

Harrisburg, November 23, 2020 – Senator John Yudichak, Senator David Argall, Representative Doyle Heffley, and Representative Aaron Kaufer have announced that the final 2020-2021 fiscal year budget includes provisions that will support the coal refuse industry.

Under House Bill 2536, which was passed last week by the Legislature, a facility must be located in Pennsylvania or directly interconnected to one of Pennsylvania’s electric distribution companies, municipal electric companies, or electric cooperatives in order to be eligible for Tier II credits under Pennsylvania’s Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard Act (AEPS). This provision includes waste coal and would match the solar provisions found in the AEPS Act.

Last year, as part of the 2019-20 budget, the Coal Refuse Energy and Reclamation Tax Credit was expanded. The program was extended from 2026 to 2036 and the program’s annual cap was increased from $10 million to $20 million. Those provisions remain in place.

 Senator John Yudichak

“I am pleased that this year’s budget includes provisions that will help the coal refuse industry retain jobs and create economic growth opportunities in communities like Swoyersville,” said Senator John Yudichak. “The coal refuse industry has been an essential partner to Pennsylvania in helping to reclaim abandoned mine lands and restoring our waterways, especially in northeast Pennsylvania.”

Senator David Argall

“This bipartisan measure that was included in our Fiscal Code will help re-invest in Pennsylvania energy and will provide major aid to our state’s coal refuse industry,” said Senator David Argall. “We have lost too many local jobs with the closing of several waste coal power plants in McAdoo and Frackville.  The jobs and the environmental remediation these plants provide by utilizing mountains of waste coal from decades ago, refilling abandoned strip mines for the first time in generations, and restoring local streams and rivers, are so important that I made this legislation my #1 budget priority this year.”

Representative Doyle Heffley

“This was a collaborative effort between the House and Senate to help create good-paying, family-sustaining jobs while eliminating an environmental hazard and creating energy from waste coal,” said Representative Doyle Heffley. “Through this Tier II expansion, $100 million would be kept in Pennsylvania preserving over 100 good paying jobs in Carbon County alone. I introduced this bill in the State House and was pleased to have the support of my colleagues in both chambers on this important issue and see this as a step forward in ensuring revenue and jobs are kept here in the Commonwealth.”

Representative Aaron Kaufer

“This legislation is vital for projects throughout Northeastern Pennsylvania, especially the waste coal project in Swoyersville,” said Representative Aaron Kaufer. “Throughout our region, these eyesores are in desperate need of remediation in order to clean up our environment, and this goes a long way to ensure that projects like these will continue.”

 

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Carly Simpson: 717-787-7105 (Senator Yudichak)
Brad Hurley: 570-325-3274 (Senator Yudichak)

Joshua J. Paul 717 787-2637 (Senator Argall)