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Rep. Neyer stands up for families in Gratiot and Isabella counties amidst expensive energy plans
RELEASE|September 15, 2023
Contact: Jerry Neyer

State Rep. Jerry Neyer today pushed back against a radical Democrat green energy plan that will raise costs for families, worsen grid reliability issues and strip away local input on future projects in their communities.

In her recent “What’s Next” address, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer pushed for accelerated timelines to make Michigan energy production carbon-free. House Bills 4759-61 currently in the Legislature would require a 100% renewable and mostly carbon-free standard in Michigan by 2035. Senate Democrats have discussed similar legislation pushing for the costly mandates.

A soon-to-be published study by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy showed a dramatic increase in energy costs if the Democrats pass the carbon-free mandate, shutting down most of Michigan’s existing power plants. Based on the Mackinac Center’s projections, the average monthly electricity bill from now until 2050 would be nearly double the current monthly average.

“People I speak with in Gratiot and Isabella counties can’t afford these cost increases. Many are struggling to meet the cost increases they have already seen due to bad policies,” said Neyer, of Shepherd. “The state and energy companies are moving toward cleaner energy production already. This is simply an arbitrary deadline to meet a national agenda – and people across Michigan are going to pay for it.”

Neyer pointed to California backing away from similarly ambitious green energy targets – including mandating carbon-free electricity by 2045 – after dealing with brownouts and rolling blackouts. Wildfire smoke and cloud cover also disrupted solar capacity and caused grid reliability issues. As residents’ electricity rates soar, the state is scrambling to undo their reckless actions by reversing course and allowing several natural gas plants and their last remaining nuclear power plant to stay open.

To accelerate the carbon-free standard, the plans would shift the power to permit major solar projects from municipalities to state government – a move Neyer said diminishes local control.

“Local communities and their residents should be able to have a say on these projects,” Neyer said. “I’m deeply concerned with the precedent this sets for state government and what other areas this could extend to down the line. It’s not responsible governing.”

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