Reid: GOP broke promise on renewable energy credits

Reid: GOP broke promise on renewable energy credits
© Greg Nash/The Hill

Senate Minority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidMcConnell warns Democrats not to change filibuster rule Filibuster reform gains steam with Democrats The Hill's Morning Report - Trump wants executive order on policing; silent on pending bills MORE (D-Nev.) says Republicans broke a promise to include renewable energy tax credits in a new aviation bill.

Reid said in a Friday statement that the GOP demanded that a pair of “anti-environment” provisions be attached to a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) bill in exchange for the renewable credits — something the Democrats would not accept.

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“Instead of working with Democrats to fix these errors by adding a provision to the FAA reauthorization bill, Republicans demanded Democrats accept a pair of anti-environment provisions,” Reid said.

“Democrats refused to do unnecessary harm to our environment. Republicans should not hold American workers and businesses hostage with far-right riders.”

At issue is the renewal of tax credits for renewable energy sources like geothermal and fuel cells. While last year’s major tax package renewed credits for wind and solar energy, other energy sources were left out, a situation that numerous lawmakers called a mistake.

Lawmakers face a July 15 deadline to pass an FAA bill when the current authorization expires. The House is planning to vote on a measure soon that doesn’t include the energy credits, and then sending it to the Senate for passage.

There were significant discussions earlier this year about including the energy provisions, and Reid says both Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellLincoln Project offers list of GOP senators who 'protect' Trump in new ad State and local officials beg Congress to send more election funds ahead of November Teacher's union puts million behind ad demanding funding for schools preparing to reopen MORE (R-Ky.) and Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanBush, Romney won't support Trump reelection: NYT Twitter joins Democrats to boost mail-in voting — here's why Lobbying world MORE (R-Wis.) “have promised to correct a Republican error in last year's omnibus spending bill that omitted important tax credits for some renewable energy technologies” and “haven't lived up to their word.”

Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneClash looms over next coronavirus relief bill Trump second-term plans remain a mystery to GOP Republicans fear backlash over Trump's threatened veto on Confederate names MORE (R-S.D.) said this week that efforts to attach the energy tax breaks have “been tamped down in the interest of trying to get this done before the deadline.”

A spokeswoman for Reid said the GOP demanded a provision to block the Interior Department’s sage grouse protection plans and another to block Interior’s stream protection rule on coal mining.