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PennFuture praises state House for moving Pennsylvania into national leadership with passage of energy savings bill

Urges prompt Senate action

Harrisburg, PA—(February 12, 2008)—Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future (PennFuture) president and CEO John Hanger praised the members of the Pennsylvania State House for their passage today of HB 2200, the energy savings bill, saying “this legislation will save Pennsylvania’s citizens money, save our environment, and move us into the forefront nationally of the clean energy economy.

“This vital legislation, passed with bipartisan support by a 152 to 45 vote, will create electricity conservation programs in every part of the Commonwealth,” said Hanger. “These programs will provide services that will allow our businesses and families to save up to 20 percent on their bills. And by using less electricity, we will also cut noxious air pollution and our contribution of heat-trapping gases to global warming.

“The energy conservation programs set up throughout the state will also grow a new energy economy, with great jobs using cutting edge technology,” continued Hanger.

“With electricity rate caps already expired in six service territories and expiring in the rest of the state in 2010, the Senate should join the House as soon as possible in passing energy savings legislation,” said Hanger. “Fortunately, Senators Ted Erickson (R- Chester, Delaware) and Robert Tomlinson (R-Bucks) have already introduced similar legislation, so there is no need to delay action. In the competitive market, electricity prices are set by supply and demand. Conserving energy and reducing demand is indispensable to any policy that seeks to moderate electricity prices.

“The passage of HB 2200 would not have happened without the dedicated work of a number of House members, including House Majority Whip Keith McCall (D-Carbon), the bill’s prime sponsor Camille (Bud) George (D-Clearfield), Gregory Vitali (D-Delaware), Robert Freeman (D-Northampton) and Chris Ross (R-Chester). We are particularly grateful for the indispensable work done by Representatives McCall and Ross. All of these public servants deserve our deep thanks for moving this important legislation forward.”

House Bill 2200 requires the Public Utility Commission to establish energy conservation programs in the service territories of all electric distribution companies. It also provides every electricity customer in the Commonwealth with a smart meter, the tool necessary for businesses and families to manage their energy use.

PennFuture is a statewide public interest membership organization that advances policies to protect and improve the state’s environment and economy. PennFuture’s activities include litigating cases before regulatory bodies and in local, state and federal courts, advocating and advancing legislative action on a state and federal level, public education and assisting citizens in public advocacy.
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