Today, Rep. David B. McKinley, P.E. joined House colleagues in passing the "Stop the War on Coal Act" (H.R. 3409) which protects American jobs and supports U.S. energy production by prohibiting new rules or regulations that will adversely impact coal mining jobs.
"With 23 million people out of work, the President should be doing all he can to grow jobs. Instead, his administration's war on coal is putting more and more Americans in the unemployment lines," said Rep. McKinley. "Tuesday's announcement that Alpha Natural Resources is closing eight of its mines and laying off more than 1,200 workers is only the latest example of the fallout," said Rep. McKinley. "The Obama Administration's EPA and its excessive regulations are decimating the coal industry."
The bill includes Rep. McKinley's provision which provides a practical alternative to the EPA designating coal ash as a hazardous material. Regulating coal ash as a hazardous material would cost hundreds of thousands of jobs and drive up electricity costs. McKinley's provision would provide federal guidelines for coal ash disposal and give states the flexibility to implement their program.
Rep. McKinley also offered an amendment to stop the EPA from retroactively vetoing permits, as it did at the Spruce Mine in Logan County, W.Va.
"The EPA's unprecedented action in revoking the Spruce Mine permit sets a chilling effect that would impact, not only coal mines, but also manufacturers, farms and other businesses. We need to give businesses certainty," said Rep. McKinley.
The House vote follows a news conference held on the East lawn of the U.S. Capitol in which Rep. McKinley was joined by other Members of the House and four W.Va. coal miners from Boone and Logan Counties.