2022 Indiana General Assembly Report, Week 7
With only one more week of committee meetings remaining, calendars quickly filled this past week while Committee Chairs worked to clear their schedules of bills. CAC attended meetings of the House Natural Resources Committee, House Utilities Committee, Senate Utilities Committee, and the Senate Commerce and Technology Committee and monitored many more.
There was no fanfare and no hours-long nuclear informercial for small modular reactors in the House Utilities Committee last Tuesday— but Senate Bill 271 moved forward with a favorable 8-3 vote nevertheless. The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis released a report detailing the enormous costs of SMRs and a warning to legislatures to proceed “cautiously and wisely” when dealing with modular nukes. Link to the full IEEFA report here. We continue our outreach as the vote on SB271 nears.
SB265 continues its path forward though uncertainty abounds, especially since legislation carving out a special path forward for the Wabash Valley Resources proposed carbon sequestration pilot project in Vigo County, has failed before. Its mirror legislation, HB1249 was scheduled for a hearing this coming week but was yanked off the schedule over the weekend. So now we wait to see what happens from here with the toxic proposal, especially since SB265 will likely get a vote in the House as early as Monday.
Upcoming This Week
- HB1196 remains on the Senate’s 2nd Reading Calendar. HB1196 aims to lessen solar homeowners red tape to gain approval for their solar system with their homeowner associations. While the bill admittedly doesn’t go as far as some may like, it’s a 5-year ongoing brokered deal with the Builders lobby, multiple legislators, including Rep. Mike Speedy (R-Indianapolis), Sen. Aaron Freeman (R-Indianapolis), and Sen. Linda Rogers (R-Granger), and solar advocates living in HOAs.
- SB271 is on 2nd reading in the House, meaning it may be amended, as soon as Monday. As a reminder, SB271 allows ratepayers to be on the hook for expensive and risky small modular nuclear reactors. Take action on 271 here.
- We expect SB273, a bill about the financing of water and wastewater utility assets that we initially supported, to generate some discussion this week. An amendment to the bill was circulated to committee members last week which promises to flip the ratemaking process at the IURC on its head. The fate of that amendment is unclear, but a lively discussion at committee is expected.
- HB1209, the bill which proposes to create a Statewide framework for the development of CO2 pipelines and CCS storage wells, will be heard in Senate Natural Resources on Monday. Take action on HB1209 and the other CCS bills here.
Lindsay Haake & Kerwin Olson