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Kansas Lawmakers Divided Over Wind Energy Tax Credit

Wind energy tax credits help make wind power more affordable, and have boosted the industry in states like Kansas. But those credits are set to expire at the end of the year, and lawmakers from Kansas disagree on what should be done.

Republican Congressman Mike Pompeo from Wichita said last week that the federal government supporting wind energy with tax credits is an intrusion into the economy. Pompeo says opposition is growing and he's arguing to let the credit expire.

But Republican Kansas Sen. Jerry Moran says the credit benefits rural economies and helps move the country towards energy independence. Moran says an abrupt end to the credit would be a major disruption to the industry.

"I don't see this as picking winners and loser, as sometimes the allegation is. This is helping our country move in a direction that's a value to the country," said Moran. "I firmly believe that over time that support needs to disappear, but how we do that matters, and we certainly wouldn't want to cripple the growing industry."

Moran says he would support phasing out the credit over several years. There was a similar debate last year before the credit was extended as part of a budget deal.

As the Kansas News Service managing editor, I help our statewide team of reporters find the important issues and breaking news that impact people statewide. We refine our daily stories to illustrate the issues and events that affect the health, well-being and economic stability of the people of Kansas. Email me at skoranda@kcur.org.
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