The following post is from Sara Letourneau, Labor Climate Project Director for the BlueGreen Alliance.
Greetings from Ohio! It was a beautiful day in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Columbus, Ohio. We had our first two events of our tour calling on Congressional leadership to save thousands of American jobs by extending the Production Tax Credit. The Production Tax Credit is a proven job creator. The 2.2-cent per kilowatt-hour tax incentive that expires at the end of the year is vital to sustaining thousands of good jobs around the country.
I’m driving around with two workers – Ryan Motel, a United Steelworkers (USW) member who was furloughed earlier this summer from the Gamesa wind turbine blade plant in Ebensberg, Pennsylvania and Lee Geisse, a USW member who works in Ohio’s wind industry. At each of our stops, we’ll be joined by local wind workers, environmental, labor and community leaders to push members of Congress to extend the Production Tax Credit and save American jobs.
All told, the jobs of 37,000 Americans are at risk, and we’re bringing the voices of workers in the industry to the districts of Congressional leaders like Speaker John Boenher, Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Congressman Pat Tiberi of Ohio, and Energy Committee Chair Fred Upton in Michigan. Our first two stops were successful and our message is resonating. Check out the coverage from 90.5 WESA in Pittsburgh. From the story:
Supporters of the 2.2-cent per kilowatt-hour tax credit, first passed in 1992, believe the uncertainty over the future of the credit has caused electric companies to stop building alternative energy facilities including wind farms.
“Businesses facing that kind of uncertainty have to make choices and you can’t make those choices right up to the deadline, you have to begin making those choices, unfortunately, before you get to that deadline,” said Khari Mosley, BlueGreen Alliance Regional Program Manager.
The BlueGreen Alliance is taking Motel and his message on a four-state tour that launched in Pittsburgh Tuesday and travels to Ohio, Michigan and Virginia.
Tomorrow we’ll be in Dayton and we’ll check back in after our morning event. Keep checking the blog and Twitter for updates!