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Public Land Renewable Energy Act Introduced

Posted Date: 
July 2, 2012
Ryan Yates, Associate Legislative Director, NACo

Reps. Joe Heck (R-Nev.) and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) have introduced legislation that would extend royalties and lease income to states and counties from solar and wind projects developed on federal lands. The Public Land Renewable Energy Act, H.R. 5991, would also continue the 25 percent county revenue-sharing agreement for geothermal development on federal lands, provided by the Energy Policy Act of 2005.

NACo recently held a joint advocacy fly-in with The Wilderness Society to promote the passage of H.R. 5991 and its companion bill, S. 1775. A diverse group of elected county officials from North Carolina to Washington joined renewable energy, wildlife and conservation advocates to encourage swift congressional action on the legislation.

Similar to existing revenue-sharing models for energy development, the act would share revenues with states and counties, while providing reinvestment in the Bureau of Land Management renewable energy programs and sharing critical funds to sustain wildlife and recreational uses of nearby land. Revenue-sharing arrangements with local governments are needed to support county operations impacted by local energy development and production.

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