LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Mark Huizenga on Thursday opposed legislation to impose a 100% clean energy mandate in Michigan after several amendments to improve the bills — including two he proposed to protect schools and nonprofits — were not adopted.
“I support using more new technologies to enhance and promote clean energy and protect our environment, but this plan simply goes too far,” said Huizenga, R-Walker. “These bills would impose an unrealistic mandate on how Michigan producers provide the energy we need to cool our homes in the summer, light our homes at night and power our economy year-round.
“While this clean energy package might sound good on paper, a 100% mandate — even one with a patchwork set of exemptions — will result in less-reliable energy at a greater cost to West Michigan families and job providers.”
Senate Bills 271, 273 and 502 would reform Michigan’s energy laws to, among many things, mandate a 100% clean energy standard by 2040.
Prior to passage of the bills, Huizenga offered two amendments to hold nonprofit organizations and schools harmless from energy price increases. Both amendments were rejected by the Senate Democratic majority.
“My amendments would have ensured the tax dollars invested in educating Michigan students stay where they belong — in the classroom — and also protect the vital work Michigan nonprofit organizations do every day by holding them harmless from any rate hikes under these bills,” Huizenga said. “Many nonprofits operate on a razor’s edge financially, and the last thing they can afford is a massive hike in their energy costs. Likewise, energy is a tremendous cost driver for schools, and now is certainly not the time to take vital resources from the classroom.”