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‘Black Friday’ declared state holiday October 31, 2014

Your Opinion: Utility surcharge supported

Dear Editor:

There has been good progress over the last few weeks for those of us who support a proactive energy policy for Missouri. The Missouri General Assembly has taken wise first steps toward passage of energy (and jobs) legislation called Infrastructure Strengthening and Regulatory Streamlining (ISRS).

The bill has overwhelmingly passed House and Senate committees. The Missouri Public Service Commission recently released a report stating that the bill would not increase overall costs for consumers.

When the General Assembly returns from its week-long break, I hope our legislators will move quickly to final passage of this energy/jobs bill.

On Tuesday, our state got a signal that we need this legislation more than ever. The United States Department of Energy announced its grant program for planning the next generation of energy — Small Modular Reactors (SMRs). Missouri has designated SMRs as a major economic development opportunity, and we have many positive factors in place.

Our state’s SMR plan has the backing of all our utilities, and we (Missouri) have a great partner in Westinghouse. We need to make sure we do all we can to attract this great opportunity. ISRS legislation will ensure that Missouri has the reliable infrastructure in place required to serve the high tech manufacturing sector.

I’m glad to see that, with ISRS, the Missouri General Assembly is on its way to creating an environment that attracts business, strengthens our systems and makes our state more competitive. Now is the time to take advantage of this major economic development opportunity. ISRS legislation is the right next step.

Issue-oriented letters to the editor in response to this or about other local topics are welcome. All letters should be limited to 400 words. The author's name must appear with the letter, and the name, address and phone number provided for verification. Letters that cannot be verified by telephone will not be published. Send letters for publication to editor@newstribune.com

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