AUGUSTA (AP) — Maine’s Republican governor is behind a bill to promote forest products and wood manufacturing jobs through incentives.

Democratic Sen. James Dill is sponsoring Gov. Paul LePage’s bill, which is set for a Tuesday hearing.

An energy project such as biomass energy from manufacturing residue that provides three jobs per installed megawatt capacity could be eligible for a long-term energy contract or renewable energy credits.

LePage has railed against long-term contracts for solar power and claims they end up raising long-term costs for consumers.

Under LePage’s bill, the cost of long-term contracts for manufacturing jobs couldn’t exceed the project’s cost plus a reasonable rate of return on investment. The bill also says the average price per kilowatt-hour would have to be in the best interest of ratepayers considering market conditions.


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