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Avella introduces bill to save downstate residents from upstate tax

State Sen. Tony Avella introduced a bill to save downstate residents from paying taxes on upstate power plants.
Photo by John Domna/AP
By Mark Hallum

State Sen. Tony Avella (D-Bayside) announced a bill designed to save downstate residents from paying taxes on upstate power plants.

If passed into law, the legislation would prevent the utility rates from going up for New Yorkers who do not benefit from nuclear power plants, many of which are struggling financially.

“The ratepayer-funded nuclear power plant subsidies solely benefit upstate plants, yet downstate residents who receive minimal benefit from their operation will fund nearly 60 percent of this subsidy,” Avella said.

“This increase is fundamentally unfair to those downstate residents who benefit little, if anything, from the operation of the upstate plants.”

The utility hike known as the Zero Emission Credit is set to take effect in April to raise $500 million per year to bail out power companies providing nuclear energy.

Avella sent a letter to the Public Service Commission expressing his approval for Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s mission to reduce greenhouse emissions, but disapproval of the attempt to burden his downstate constituents with spiking utility rates.

Reach reporter Mark Hallum by e-mail at mhallum@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4564.

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