Representative Jon Runyan (NJ-3) announced today that he has written Governor Chris Christie urging him to address the future of Lacey Township and the Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Facility when crafting his Energy Master Plan.
Last December, Governor Christie and Exelon Corporation announced that Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Facility will be closed no later than December 31, 2019. Congressman Runyan believes that if a new energy production facility were to replace the Oyster Creek Nuclear Facility, after its closure, it would help to ease the impact on the local economy and tax base. Runyan said,
"A statement of support for a new power generation facility from the Governor will bring a level of economic certainty to Lacey Township and Ocean County so that companies that call this region home can continue to operate with confidence and grow their businesses."
Lacey Township Committeeman David Most applauded Runyan's efforts in support of Lacey Township stating,
"On behalf of Lacey Township we appreciate Congressman Runyan's commitment to sticking with us on this important issue."
Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Facility is located in Lacey Township and is owned by Exelon Corporation. Opened in 1969, Oyster Creek is the oldest operating nuclear power plant in the United States.
A copy of the letter is shown below:
Dear Governor Christie,
I write to respectfully request that you use your upcoming "Energy Master Plan" as an opportunity to update and reassure the residents, municipal leaders, and business in Lacey Township on your long term plans for responding to the closing of Oyster Creek.
As you know, the decision to close Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Facility no later than December 31st, 2019 will significantly impact the people and economy of Lacey Township and Ocean County. It is my understanding that when Oyster Creek closes, the town stands to lose approximately $11.1 million in Energy Tax Receipts, or 41 percent of its municipal budget. This loss in revenue will inevitably lead to an increase in local taxes, on an already overburdened tax-base.
There are options that could lead to the continued viability for Oyster Creek facilities. For example, if the Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Facility were to be replaced with another power generation facility, regardless of the source of power, the detrimental economic and workforce impact of the plant's closing may be mitigated by the continued collection of Energy Tax Receipts. The existing electrical infrastructure at Oyster Creek is capable of handling an 800 megawatt generation facility. The infrastructure should allow for a smooth transition to building a new generation facility.
I believe that an Oyster Creek transition plan will help to provide a level of economic certainty to Lacey Township and Ocean County so that businesses who call this region home can continue to operate with confidence and grow their companies.
I appreciate your hard work in making New Jersey a better place for families and businesses, and I thank you in advance for considering my request. Your staff may contact Jeff Brabant of my staff (202) 225-4765 if we can be of further assistance. I look forward to working with you to move New Jersey forward.
Member of Congress