Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative; prohibition on participation by Commonwealth. (HB1270)

Introduced By

Del. Charles Poindexter (R-Glade Hill) with support from co-patrons Del. John McGuire (R-Glen Allen), and Del. Israel O'Quinn (R-Bristol)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative; prohibition on participation by Commonwealth. Prohibits the Governor or any state agency from adopting any regulation establishing a carbon dioxide cap-and-trade program or bringing about the participation by the Commonwealth in a regional market for the trading of carbon dioxide allowances. The bill provides that the Commonwealth shall be allowed to participate in such a cap-and-trade program if the House of Delegates and the Senate of Virginia each adopt a resolution that specifically references and approves the regulatory text proposed for adoption by a state agency. Read the Bill »


Bill Has Failed


01/10/2018Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/10/18 18103053D
01/10/2018Referred to Committee on Commerce and Labor
01/30/2018Reported from Commerce and Labor (12-Y 10-N) (see vote tally)
02/01/2018Read first time
02/02/2018Passed by for the day
02/05/2018Passed by for the day
02/06/2018Read second time and engrossed
02/07/2018Impact statement from DPB (HB1270)
02/07/2018Read third time and passed House (51-Y 47-N)
02/07/2018VOTE: PASSAGE (51-Y 47-N) (see vote tally)
02/08/2018Constitutional reading dispensed
02/08/2018Referred to Committee on Commerce and Labor
02/26/2018Reported from Commerce and Labor (11-Y 4-N) (see vote tally)
02/28/2018Constitutional reading dispensed (40-Y 0-N) (see vote tally)
03/01/2018Read third time
03/01/2018Passed Senate (21-Y 19-N) (see vote tally)
03/05/2018Bill text as passed House and Senate (HB1270ER)
03/05/2018Signed by Speaker
03/06/2018Impact statement from DPB (HB1270ER)
03/08/2018Signed by President
03/14/2018Enrolled Bill communicated to Governor on March 14, 2018
03/14/2018G Governor's Action Deadline Midnight, April 9, 2018
04/09/2018G Vetoed by Governor
04/18/2018House sustained Governor's veto


This bill was discussed on the floor of the General Assembly. Below is all of the video that we have of that discussion, 2 clips in all, totaling 10 minutes.


This is a transcript of the video clips in which this bill is discussed.

Del. Charles Poindexter (R-Glade Hill): Rely and and cost. Reliability that when we push a bought ton, our hospitals, our homes, our businesses, everything we do is fundamentally based on electricity. This bill provides for this body to have a major policy role in future policies of this most critical functionality in our commonwealth. I hope it would be the pleasure of the body that we pass this bill.

[Unknown]: the delegate from fairfax, delegate bulova. >> thank you, Mr. Speaker. Speaking to the bill. >> the delegate has the floor. thank you, Mr. Speaker and members of the house. For a number of years, I have had and I know many of you have had the pleasure of listening to the delegate from henrico delegate massie talk about Mr. Market. Mr. Market is back and Mr. Market is very concerned about this bill. I think the most important point and sooner or later the electric utilities, dominion included acknowledged that they are expecting for carbon dioxide to be regulated at the federal or state level. The question for all of us is how are we going to do that in a responsible way. The regional greenhouse gas initiative that this bill would prevent us in entering is a responsible way to do that. The reason it is responsible is because it relies on market forces. And so we are able to get the most bang for our buck out of this. And the great thing about reggie is it is not just virginia, it is a regional consortium. And we even get greater efficiencies because we are trading within a larger market area. If you appreciate the power of the free market, and want to address can carbon dioxide and sea level rise this is a bill that you don't want to support. But I also want to talk about a close cousin of Mr. Market. And it is Mr. Opportunity cost. [Laughter] this bill would prevent virginia from being able to take advantage of $200 million per year that would be generated from auctions from the regional greenhouse gas initiative. and let me just tell you what that means in terms of opportunities that have been lost because we had a bill that was up earlier that would allow us to prioritize and put our own fingerprint in terms of what this would do. We would lose the opportunity to provide up to $70 million per here year for shoreline resiliency in the hampton roads area. We know we have a vulnerability issue and $70 million per year is critical to protecting our infrastructure. This would lose the opportunity to provide $60 million for energy efficiency including weatherization for some of our poorer residents. And if you look at the reggie states, one of the things that is really telling is if you look at what the average cost is per household, for electricity, seven out of the nine states are actually less than what we have here in virginia and you are probably wondering why is that? That is because those states are able to plow the money back into energy efficiency. And so when it really matters, to the person really paying, that is how that is done. $34 million for investments to promote renewable energy industry. $20 million for investments in workforce training in southwestern virginia where we desperately need that kind of training and $10 million to provide a stable source of funding for agricultural bnb cost sharing programs and support the soil and water conservation districts. is the opportunity we are losing by supporting this bill. I would wrap up and say a lot of our largest businesses some located here in virginia are very concerned about this bill and that includes mars and nestle and unilever and many other fortune 500 companies. We opened the tore to door to responsibly reducing carbon in virginia. What I'm asking you today is let's not slam that door shut. I hope that we do not pass this bill. Thank you, Mr. Speaker. >> the delegate from scott, delegate kilgore. >> Mr. Speaker and ladies and gentlemen, speak to the bill. >> the delegate has the floor. what this bill is about is about our legislative rights has you will of us represent 85,000 individuals. Do we want to give our voice, do we want to give our vote to the executive branch? I say no, we don't. We want to have a say in doing -- we want to have a say in what the energy what your policy is going to be here in virginia. And if you look at all this money floating around, I never could figure out where this money is coming from. It is pie in the sky, that is what it is. That is all it is. And we also what the administration wants to do is put us in with a group of northern states, put virginia in with maryland, and new jersey and folks like that. That is not who we need to be in with when we are going in to any agreement like this because I would say -- I would -- I doubt that their energy costs are cheaper than virginia because virginia is the place you want to be when you are locating a manufacturing plant, when you are locating jobs. This is where you want to be. How many people do you know that want to go to new jersey? Okay. Come on, y'all. Not many. I say vote yes for this bill. Vote so that we as a house and our senators down the hall have a say in the energy policy of virginia. That is what we need to do. Vote yes. Thank you. [Applause]

Del. Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights): shall the bill pass? The clerk will close the roll.

[Unknown]: ayes 51, nos 47. >> ayes 51, nos 47.