In a conversation with Bristol Fifth District State Representative and Speaker Pro Tem of the Massachusetts House Patricia Haddad, she told WSAR various stakeholders are awaiting decisions from the Federal Department of the Interior regarding the Vineyard Wind Project.
Haddad said developers have been hoping to secure time-sensitive contracts as Governor Charlie Baker went to the capital last week.
"Last Monday, the Governor went to DC and met with the Secretary of the Interior and advocated for moving it along quicker,” she said. “We don't know how it worked out. He felt that it was productive so we're hoping things will continue to go forward."
Haddad says money in the wind project will be lost if the credits aren’t reached in enough time.
"If they're not hit, then unfortunately the project loses money,” she said. “The state itself has not actually given the developers any incentive.”
Haddad continued, “The only incentive they have is the distributors who buy electricity from them. They're making their money or profit or ability to bring in the very low price because there's a federal tax credit."
With bids going out at the end of the week, Haddad told WSAR a budget amendment of hers regarding wind energy has been updated
"I had an amendment in the budget,” she said. “It went through. It was actually one of the few things the Governor sent back as an amendment. We had put a cap on the price saying it could not go any higher, unaware of how deep the difference was going to be in the federal tax credit.”
She explained that the Governor amended her amendment.
“This is what the Governor sent back - an amendment to my amendment saying that the cap could be lifted for one time so that the bids that go out on August 9 have some wiggle room," Haddad told WSAR.
Bristol Community College and UMASS Dartmouth are among those promoting wind energy. It’s hoped Somerset and New Bedford can both benefit as each will deal with components regarding windmills that will be placed in the Atlantic.