CRS was actively involved in three ballot measures that were decided on Election Day. We scored important victories in two of those. Here is a brief recap:
Nevada Question 6 – CRS supported this measure that would increase Nevada’s renewable energy standard for electricity to 50 percent by 2030. Such a standard is needed because Nevada, which has abundant solar and geothermal resources, still depends on natural gas piped in from other states for 75 percent of its electricity generation.
This lopsided energy mix makes little sense because solar energy in Nevada, even with storage for overnight power, is currently cheaper than power generated by natural gas. Even more important for ratepayers, while solar energy will keep getting cheaper, the price of natural gas is expected to double over the next decade.
Question 6 passed, and will need to pass again in 2020 to become law.
Colorado Amendment 74 – CRS opposed this amendment pushed by American Farm Bureau and the oil and gas industry. Had it passed, Amendment 74 would require taxpayers to compensate property owners when a law or regulation reduces the value of their property.
In other words, individuals and corporations could sue local governments over any law they contend might cost them money, even if the law is necessary to protect the public. Not only would it fleece taxpayers, it would also create a strong disincentive for enacting laws that limit pollution, manage development, or protect health and safety.
Amendment 74 thankfully failed.
Arizona Proposition 127 – This measure was the same as Nevada’s Question 6. It would have increased the renewable energy standard to 50 percent by 2030. It made sense because Arizona has solar energy potential on par with Nevada and the state’s largest utility, Arizona Public Service (APS), inexplicably plans to dramatically increase power generation from costlier out-of-state gas.
APS spent $30 million on a scare campaign of false claims to fight Proposition 127, and the state’s attorney general altered the ballot language to play into those scare tactics.
Proposition 127 failed.
CRS members and partners who helped with these ballot measures, regardless of outcome, deserve a great deal of credit and thanks for their effort.