The House Natural Resources Committee today passed Congressman Tom McClintock’s legislation, H.R. 2915, the American Taxpayer and Western Area Power Administration Customer Protection Act of 2011. The legislation repeals the 2009 Stimulus Act’s new $3.25 billion Western Area Power Administration (WAPA) loan authority, including the taxpayer bailout provision for failed renewable energy transmission projects.
“Recent events make it clear that billions of dollars of taxpayer funds have been placed in jeopardy to support companies that obviously lack the merit to attract private investments,” said Congressman McClintock. “These dubious interests rely instead on political connections with government officials to access taxpayer funds. As they collapse, the taxpayers end up holding the bag. It is time to require every sector of the energy industry to raise its own capital through its own merit rather than to perpetuate the crony capitalism that is now running rampant through this government.”
The legislation would specifically repeal Section 301 of the Hoover Power Plant Act of 1984, which was amended by the Stimulus Act to suddenly create the new borrowing authority. It would not apply to any projects already approved before September 15, 2011.
The legislation next will be voted on by the full House of Representatives.