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U.S. Senate defeats natural gas vehicle proposal backed by T. Boone Pickens

A proposal that would offer tax credits to spur the production and purchase of natural gas vehicles gets a majority in the Senate but fails to meet the 60-vote threshold set for amendments.
by Chris Casteel Published: March 14, 2012

The proposal got little debate on Tuesday since it was one of many proposed amendments considered by the Senate as it moved toward finishing the highway bill.

Inhofe said the bill had not been analyzed by the congressional authorities to determine how much the tax breaks would cost the U.S. Treasury.

He said the proposed incentives for natural gas vehicles would come at “an enormous cost,'' possibly billions of dollars.

“The bottom line is that the promise of natural gas vehicles strong on its own — it does not need taxpayer subsidies to thrive,'' Inhofe said.

Rep. John Sullivan, R-Tulsa, the lead sponsor of a natural gas vehicle bill in the House, said the proposal was supported by a majority of senators and that he was disappointed the amendment required 60 votes to pass in the 100-member Senate.

“Gas prices are on the rise with no relief in sight,” Sullivan said. “How many times does history have to repeat itself before Washington stops bickering and starts focusing on ending our $1 billion-per-day day addiction to OPEC oil?”

by Chris Casteel
Washington Bureau
Chris Casteel began working for The Oklahoman's Norman bureau in 1982 while a student at the University of Oklahoma. After covering the police beat, federal courts and the state Legislature in Oklahoma City, he moved to Washington in 1990, where...
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Also ...

Wind tax credit fails

An extension of a longtime federal tax credit for wind energy production failed Tuesday in the U.S. Senate.

The amendment to a transportation funding bill failed to gain 60 votes for further action. The vote was 49-49, with Oklahoma's Republican senators, Tom Coburn and Jim Inhofe, voting against the amendment.

The measure would have extended a 2.2-cent per kilowatt-hour tax credit for wind energy production that will expire Dec. 31. The credit dates to 1992.


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