NJ Solar Energy Businesses, Electrical Contractors, & Solar Workers Call on Governor Corzine to Veto Anti-Solar Legislation
The coalition characterized the bill as an "oppressive new mandate" on all renewable energy and energy efficiency installation projects in
"This legislation must be vetoed by Governor Corzine. It is anti-solar because it will result in increasing the labor costs of solar by 180%. It contradicts the Governor's and Legislature's policies of growing solar and reducing global warming gases. If signed, this bill will increase a solar system's total cost increasing it by as much as 30%. In effect, this will kill many contracts and discourage already fragile private investment. The end result could be that solar energy will wither and clean energy jobs will suffer. As a result of this bill, solar energy has cloudy future in the State of New Jersey", said
A.3372/S.2340 applies to all energy efficiency projects along with renewable projects such as wind, solar, and biomass. The legislation pertains to any project that receives any "approval" or any authorization by the NJ Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU). Currently, the legislation is so broad that it includes energy efficiency upgrades for non-profits such as churches, and small businesses.
"This is a back-door approach by unions to take-over renewable energy and energy efficiency work in NJ, and will result in a net loss of clean energy jobs. Solar energy remains expensive and this is the wrong time and wrong sector to be forcing union wages on growing industry that has such an important role,' Murray said.
"We offer fair wages, based on experience and the type of job, but the wages this legislation will force us to pay reflect not fair wages, but wages needed for union hall business staff, other dues, and for political action committee donations to legislators. This hurts the growth of solar energy and the market will not be able withstand this mandate. A 10% increase can easily result in cancelled contracts and therefore, clean energy job layoffs will occur," Murray added.
Contact: Dolores Phillips 609-516-3526
SOURCE Mid-Atlantic Solar Energy Industries Association
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