Coal / Energy / Freeze on Clean Energy / Renewable Energy / Wind Energy

Ohio Majority Leader Bill Seitz: A “Free Market” politician picking energy winners and losers

Powerful legislator leads attack on wind industry while pushing taxpayer subsidies for coal plants

COLUMBUS — “On at least 15 occasions, according to our review, powerful Ohio House Majority Leader Bill Seitz has said he believes in free markets, proclaimed himself a ‘capitalist’ or declared his opposition to energy mandates. As a leading board member of the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), he claims to believe in “limited government [and] free markets.”

But recently, Rep. Seitz has begun picking energy winners and losers.

From his post as Majority Leader in Ohio’s House of Representatives, Seitz has aggressively worked to bolster the fortunes of the state’s aging coal plants, while leading efforts to block the wind industry in Ohio. This has happened while the state’s coal industry continues to shrink and wind power — now cheaper than coal — has grown dramatically in surrounding states.

Coal has been mined in Ohio for two centuries. By the mid-1880s, ten million tons were being produced every year. But by the mid-Twentieth Century, coal was in decline, replaced by other fossil fuels and now a fast-growing newcomer: wind.”

— Scott Peterson, executive director, Checks and Balances Project

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