Share This

Hispanic Elected Local Officials Resolution

August 2012

 

SUPPORTING THE INCLUSION OF NUCLEAR ENERGY AS A VALUABLE PART OF THE U.S. ENERGY PORTFOLIO AND A SOURCE OF DEVELOPMENT FOR MINORITY-OWNED BUSINESSES ALREADY IN AND WISHING TO ENTER THE ENERGY PRODUCTION INDUSTRY

WHEREAS, the Hispanic Elected Local Officials (HELO) believes that environmentally responsible and equitable job preservation and job creation that include minority workers and minority-owned businesses are desirable and achievable overarching objectives for U.S. policymakers to pursue,

WHEREAS, nuclear power plants provide high-paying, stable employment and garner public acceptance in the communities in which they operate, generating nearly a half-billion dollars in yearly economic activity and nearly $100 million in state, local and federal taxes annually; and

WHEREAS, America’s 104 nuclear plants generate 20 percent of the electricity for our homes and businesses, every day around the clock, without emitting pollutants or greenhouse gases into the atmosphere; and

WHEREAS, the nuclear industry is working with community colleges around the country to develop and implement education and training programs which provide opportunities for minority students to enter the nuclear workforce and benefit from good jobs, excellent benefits and community enhancement; and

WHEREAS, the U.S. Department of Energy under President Obama has proposed revised rules for the EPAct Title XVII that are more achievable than the previous rules for the program, which presently authorizes $18.5 billion in loan guarantee volume to fund the first three to four new nuclear projects to provide the hosts of energy security, environmental, economic and social benefits enumerated above; and

WHEREAS, the U.S. commercial nuclear industry continues to pursue a comprehensive integrated strategy of used fuel management that includes: safe ongoing on-site fuel storage; potential interim fuel storage in willing host communities; research of recycling technologies to maximize fuel’s energy potential and eventually close the nuclear fuel cycle by an economical, proliferation-resistant method; and eventual permanent disposal of some fuel products in one or more repositories; and

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that HELO supports the development of safe, secure and economically beneficial new nuclear plants in the United States provided the approval process is inclusive of input from local government and minority communities which will enhance our energy security, help the country reach our clean air objectives, provide support for strong economies, develop thousands of good paying jobs and provide educational opportunities; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that HELO finds promise in the creation of a permanent federal financing platform similar to the Clean Energy Deployment Administration concept that enjoys significant bipartisan, bicameral support in Congress to provide loans, loan guarantees and other credit support to clean energy technologies, including new nuclear power plants and new nuclear equipment manufacturing facilities as long as such a platform would carry with it the requirement that nuclear energy utilities meet at least a 20 percent minority-owned business compliment in all tier I and tier II supplier contracts of the nuclear energy industry; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that HELO urges Congress and the states to provide tax incentives for investments in nuclear power plants, new nuclear-related manufacturing and minority workforce development for the outreach and hiring of minorities to operate nuclear power plants, and expand existing production tax credits provided by EPAct 2005; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that urges the U.S. Congress to explore resources in improving innovation around nuclear spent fuel recycling technology; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that HELO supports the recommendations of the National Blue Ribbon Commission on America’s Nuclear Future that  provide long term policy guidance for used fuel recycling and eventual disposal, including establishment of one or more consolidated used fuel storage facilities in voluntary host communities that are not populated that include local government participation in the approval process, use of the Nuclear Waste Fund for this purpose and establishment of a government corporation outside of the Department of Energy for used nuclear fuel management provided; and

NOW, BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that a copy of this Resolution be transmitted to the Board of Directors of  the National League of Cities to be incorporated into National League of City policy and future advocacy efforts on behalf of local government.