With Little Fuss or Fanfare, Legislature Passes Clean-Energy Bills

In a day absent of the drama that enveloped the issues for the past few months, the Legislature gave quick and easy approval to bills that could ask ratepayers to subsidize nuclear power and to ante up even more dollars for renewable energy.

With virtually no debate, both houses easily approved a bill (S-2313) that could provide $300 million annually to Public Service Enterprise Group to keep its three nuclear plants in South Jersey open. The vote was 29-7 in the Senate; 60-10-1 in the Assembly.

The vote marked a significant win for PSEG, which spent the past year lobbying legislators for the subsidy in a campaign in which the energy conglomerate spent more than $2 million pushing for what it called a safety net for its plants. Nuclear plants across the country are economically challenged because of cheap natural-gas prices.

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