[ exact phrase in "" • results by date ]

[ Google-powered • results by relevance ]


News Home

Subscribe to RSS feed

Add NWW headlines to your site (click here)

Sign up for daily updates

Keep Wind Watch online and independent!

Donate $10

Donate $5

Selected Documents

All Documents

Research Links


Press Releases


Publications & Products

Photos & Graphics


Allied Groups

Wind cronyism costs linger  

Credit:  Free Market Friday: Wind cronyism costs linger | The Journal Record | September 20, 2018 | journalrecord.com ~~

How did mankind figure out fire without a government program? These days every new technology has backers who insist they are one more government check away from being the next big thing. That was the Solyndra story, and in Oklahoma, it is the story of wind farm companies.

Crony handouts are unfair – the biggest, best-connected companies benefit, often at the expense of the little guy or the disruptive outsider. They are also addictive. Even after the Oklahoma Legislature repealed the most lavish subsidies and tax breaks in 2017, wind energy companies are still trying to avoid paying ordinary taxes.

The journalism website NonDoc.com reported last recently on a lawsuit involving two Oklahoma counties and a wind farm operator ultimately owned by the French government. The Rock Falls Wind Farm in Grant and Kay counties is owned by a subsidiary of EDF Energy, a British firm, which itself is a subsidiary of Électricité de France. EDF convinced the Blackwell Economic Development Authority to pony up $220 million underwritten by “lease revenue bonds,” which are to be retired by a complicated agreement that supposedly leaves ownership in BEDA’s hands. Those dollars built the wind farm, which went online last year.

BEDA then applied to Grant and Kay counties for a property tax exemption as the ultimate owner of the wind farm. The counties said “no,” and BEDA sued.

Meanwhile, tiny Deer Creek-Lamont Schools issued $2.5 million in bonds that were to be paid off by property tax revenues – including those from the wind farm. No one warned the school that the expected cash flow from the wind farm could be curtailed. Now those funds are imperiled by BEDA’s lawsuit. Newkirk Public Schools also stands to lose property tax revenue.

A public agency underwrites a wind farm owned by the French government then tries to bully two counties into giving them a tax-free ride. If they win, two school districts will suffer, and taxpayers in two counties will be forced to make up for the lost property tax revenue. This would set a dangerous precedent that if proliferated will bankrupt taxpayers and schools.

Is it any wonder that the wind farm industry floods the state Capitol every year with 40-plus lobbyists demanding handouts at taxpayer expense? Now they’re trying to win backdoor subsidies at the expense of schools.

Jonathan Small serves as president of the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs (www.ocpathink.org).

Source:  Free Market Friday: Wind cronyism costs linger | The Journal Record | September 20, 2018 | journalrecord.com

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding
Donate $5 PayPal Donate


News Watch Home

Get the Facts Follow Wind Watch on Twitter

Wind Watch on Facebook


© National Wind Watch, Inc.
Use of copyrighted material adheres to Fair Use.
"Wind Watch" is a registered trademark.