Articles filed under Taxes & Subsidies from Massachusetts

Cape Wind and tabloid journalism

In the Williams/Whitcomb world of tabloid journalism, there is no room for thoughtful discussion, for weighing costs against benefits, for understanding that self-interest is at work on both sides of the issue or for any kind of honest discussion. Such thoughts would get in the way of the facile thinking and cynical blather that fills their book and that is now commonplace on TV, radio and the Internet. Do you find yourself bored now that Don Imus and Rosie O'Donnell are off the air? Does the Internet no longer meet your need for trash talk? Then read this book. You won't learn anything substantive from it, but it'll be great entertainment.
31 May 2007

Response to science fiction writer Wendy Williams

Sorry, Ms. Williams, but you have no right to classify us all as ‘narcissists'; we hold our anti-wind positions for a wide variety of reasons. Mainly, though, those who oppose wind do so because we've taken the trouble to learn the technical details, and we realize that wind power is in fact an expensive scam, driven solely by developers eager to cash in on the concerns over climate change. Were subsidy money and incentives to be removed, these folk would decamp overnight.
18 May 2007

Edgartown selectmen lead initiative to join ocean wind turbine proposal

With Edgartown in the lead, the Vineyard is poised to join with Nantucket and Cong. William Delahunt in pushing for the establishment of an offshore energy zone to harness wind, wave and possibly tidal energy from waters between the two Islands. The move is a first step toward the goal of making the Islands energy independent.
4 May 2007

DiMasi bill stirs up questions, opposition

A massive bill by the House speaker to promote conservation and renewable energy is stirring up a whirlwind of opposition among consumer groups, environmentalists and utilities. While some critics say the 360-page proposal does not go far enough in creating incentives, others say it would undermine conservation and clean energy efforts already under way in Massachusetts. David Guarino, a spokesman for Speaker Salvatore F. DiMasi, D-Boston, said yesterday that Mr. DiMasi expects "robust debate" over the legislation, and it remains his top priority.
4 Apr 2007

Bill to offer incentives for renewable energy use

Massachusetts House leaders today are to unveil plans for steering the state away from reliance on fossil fuels and toward embracing renewable energy and alternative fuels. House Speaker Salvatore F. DiMasi will file legislation offering financial incentives to cities and towns to rapidly approve permits for the building of so-called "clean" energy generation facilities. It also establishes various programs to make it financially palatable for homeowners to invest in expensive energy efficient products. Haverhill Democrat Rep. Brian S. Dempsey, the chairman of the House Telecommunications and Energy Committee, helped draft the sweeping proposal, called "The Green Communities Act of 2007." He said it represents a dramatic change in the state's energy policy.
20 Mar 2007

Tax breaks approved for wind power developer

That chilly arctic wind that has people cringing and shivering this week could be warming homes and delivering hot water in Western Massachusetts in future years, with the help of Gov. Deval L. Patrick, who approved local tax breaks for what would be the state’s largest wind project. The legislation will allow the small towns of Florida and Monroe to exempt the project developer, PPM Energy, from local property taxes on the 1,500 acres that will be used for 20 large wind turbines planned along the ridge lines of Bakke Mountain and Crum Hill near the Vermont border. The bill will allow the towns to negotiate payments in lieu of taxes with the developer.
10 Feb 2007

Mass. power plants to pay emissions penalties; State rejoins Northeast greenhouse gas initiative

Massachusetts power plant owners will have to pay a penalty for every pound of emissions that contribute to global warming under an agreement signed by Governor Deval Patrick yesterday that is expected to raise hundreds of millions of dollars for an ambitious energy conservation and renewable energy program. Patrick agreed to rejoin the seven-state Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, which aims to gradually reduce the production of greenhouse gases in the Northeast. Reversing his predecessor Mitt Romney, who pulled out of the pact over concerns that the emissions fee would drive up the already-high price of electricity, Patrick predicted that electricity costs would ultimately drop because the penalties would generate up to $125 million a year to spend on conservation.
19 Jan 2007

Turbine misses out on federal loan money

The proposed $3.8 million wind turbine project to be erected on Town Farm Road has temporarily run out of air. The project hit a funding snag when word came that the turbine was not selected under the Federal Clean Renewable Energy Bonds program. The bond is the product of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, signed by President George W. Bush in August, allocating $800 million to clean energy projects for municipalities countrywide. The bond, a 20-year zero interest federal loan, would have covered the entire cost of the turbine, which would provide an estimated 3 percent of the town’s energy or enough electricity to support 400 households.
18 Jan 2007

Voters to decide turbine purchase

WESTPORT — Town Meeting voters in May will be asked to allocate more than $100,000 to purchase and construct twin wind turbines behind Town Hall and the police station. The 100-foot towers each would take up the equivalent of about one parking space behind the municipal buildings on Main Road. The turbines are expected to cost $54,000 each, but according to a report from the town’s Alternative Energy Committee would pay for themselves in four years or less. The cost of the turbines could be partially reimbursable with a grant from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, the committee learned. Grants of more than $42,000 per wind turbine are available.
16 Jan 2007

Town denied loan for wind turbine on Town Farm Road

A proposal to build a wind turbine on Town Farm Road was a springboard issue this year, catalyzing any number of other environmental movements in town. But as 2006 ends, the future of the project is in doubt. Last spring’s Town Meeting approval of the proposal was contingent on the town securing federal, zero-interest loans, and that grant application was not approved.
29 Dec 2006

Westport moves to erect wind turbine

The town could become the first municipality in Massachusetts to provide electrical power to a town hall by way of a wind turbine. A 100-foot tower would take up about one parking space behind Town Hall and pay for itself within four years, according to a presentation before Westport’s Alternative Energy Committee made by Lighthouse Electrical Contracting Inc. of Pembroke. The $54,000 cost of a wind turbine is potentially partially reimbursable with a grant from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, the committee learned. The collaborative is the state’s development agency for renewable energy and the innovation economy, which the organization asserts is responsible for a quarter of the jobs in the state.
27 Dec 2006

Gov.-elect, House speaker unveil plans for energy

Gov.-elect Deval Patrick said Wednesday he wants to put greater emphasis on the state’s future energy needs and will create a new cabinet level energy secretary after he takes office in January. Patrick’s comments come as House Speaker Sal DiMasi, D-Boston, unveiled his own energy plans for the new legislative year. DiMasi’s plan includes setting a five-year energy reduction goal, creating a “green communities program” to encourage energy efficiency and giving $1,500 credits for taxpayers who buy hybrid or alternative fuel cars.
13 Dec 2006

Wind power idea still a dream

One step forward and one step back is the latest dance for wind power advocates in Arlington. Proponents of bringing a wind turbine to Brackett Elementary School received support from officials in July to pursue a state-sponsored grant that would bring in $40,000 for a wind feasibility study, with another $5,000 in costs split between town and school budgets. But two weeks ago, members of Sustainable Arlington learned they had been turned down for the Large Onsite Renewable Initiative program run through the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.
16 Nov 2006

$575K powers wind turbine plan

Efforts to put a wind turbine on the campus of Holy Name Central Catholic Junior Senior High School earned a major boost last week with the award of $575,000 from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative. The grant will cover a big chunk of the project’s $1.6 million cost, and Stephen A. Perla, superintendent of the Diocese of Worcester Catholic Schools, says he is optimistic about raising the remaining $1 million.
6 Nov 2006

Bay State ‘behind on wind power’

Massachusetts is joining a race against other U.S. states for wind power development funding to build infrastructure necessary to keep innovation here, and reverse a track record of letting wind technologies drift out to the Midwest. In addition to playing catch-up, Massachusetts officials face roadblocks including coastal Cape residents who vocally oppose windmills messing up the Atlantic horizon, lack of industry presence, and a lack of infrastructure to support development. There’s also some gale force competition blowing in from Texas and Iowa where sweeping prairies and open spaces provide ideal conditions for wind power generation.
20 Oct 2006

Wind plan gathers steam

FALL RIVER - A recently completed study indicates the city’s Wastewater Treatment Plant on Bay Street may be an optimal site for a wind turbine that could drastically reduce the electrical bill associated with the site. Officials with the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative reported their initial findings to the City Council Tuesday night, and are recommending that city leaders take advantage of a grant that will pay for a more extensive feasibility study.
30 Sep 2006

Alternative energy grows

Framingham resident Kenneth Lombardo’s $14,000 Sharp solar power system would have paid for itself in about seven years. But with a grant from the Westborough-based Renewable Energy Trust and an expected federal income tax credit, Lombardo said the system, which as an electrician he installed himself in March, has already paid for itself. The solar power system is designed to last at least 20 years.
24 Aug 2006
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