Written by Nicole Porter
Last updated on April 30, 2013 @ 11:08AM
Created on April 29, 2013 @ 11:52PM
The coal industry was thrown back in the news last week when a federal appeals board ruled that the EPA had the legal authority to veto permits for one of our state's largest mountaintop removal mines, years after that permit had been approved by the US Army Corps of Engineers. On Monday, Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito joined U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell in Kentucky to announce their plans to introduce the "Coal Jobs Protection Act" in both the house and senate.
This legislation aims to push back on the EPA's overreach into the permitting process, which they claim is negatively impacting coal-mining jobs in states like West Virginia and Kentucky.
McConnell said this decision would allow for a back-door means to shut down coal mines permanently which would make thousands of people lose their jobs. He claimed that the EPA is making decisions outside of its authority and without a single vote in the congress.
Capito said, "This administration is doing everything it can to destroy the coal industry. From President Obama stating that he wants to 'bankrupt' it to the EPA holding the permitting process hostage, this administration is standing in the way of economic growth and driving up hardworking West Virginians' electric bills."
She said that's why she is fighting it.
Just last week Senators Manchin and Rockefeller announced their "Fair Play Act" which would stop the EPA from vetoing permits that have already been issued.
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