Gov. McAuliffe Vetoes Clean Power Plan Bill

Date: March 15, 2016 Last Edit: March 17, 2016

Proposal would have required legislative approval to adopt federal mandates.

Gov. McAuliffe Vetoes Clean Power Plan Bill

Last month, Virginia lawmakers approved a measure that would take an important step toward rejecting the state’s implementation of some currently embattled Environmental Protection Agency rules and regulations. However, Gov. Terry McAuliffe vetoed the bill.

Senate Bill 21 would have required the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality to prepare an extensive report highlighting the impact of any proposal to comply with the EPA’s Clean Power Plan emission requirements. The General Assembly would have had to give approval for any plans before they were implemented.

A statement from Gov. McAuliffe’s office noted: “The Governor, who supports the CPP as a necessary response to climate change and an opportunity for Virginia to become a leader in clean energy, opposed the bill as an unacceptable breach of Virginia’s constitutional separation of powers.”

Unfortunately, on a 21-19 vote, the State Senate was not able to override
the Governor’s veto.  27 affirmative votes are needed to override a veto.

NFIB opposes the CPP and argues that it would unconstitutionally force states to switch power generation, dramatically increasing energy costs for businesses and consumers. The NFIB Small Business Legal Center has also filed a brief with the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit asking the court to stop the EPA’s rule on power plants.

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