Fiedler bill to modernize Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority passes House with bipartisan support

HARRISBURG, June 25 — Today H.B. 2338, which would accelerate Pennsylvania’s energy production, passed the House with bipartisan support. The bill was introduced by state Reps. Elizabeth Fiedler, D-Phila.; Jennifer O’Mara, D-Delaware; and Mandy Steele, D-Allegheny.

The bill would update the duties and powers of the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority to enable the body to apply for and leverage billions of federal dollars available through the Inflation Reduction Act.

“With the federal government now implementing the $550 billion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the $783 billion Inflation Reduction Act, we have an incredible opportunity in front of us to jumpstart energy production and create good jobs in Pennsylvania. But to do that, PEDA needs the tools to seize these funds,” Fiedler said. “I’m excited to work with my Senate colleagues and get this done for working Pennsylvanians.”

The bill is backed by labor unions such as the Pennsylvania Building and Construction Trades Council, the Allegheny County Labor Council, IBEW Region 3 and Local 98, and Operating Engineers Local No. 542. It also has the support of the Philadelphia Green Capitol Corp. and environmental groups, including Conservation Voters of PA, Natural Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club-PA, PennFuture, and the PA Clean Air Council.

On June 3, the House Consumer Protection, Utilities and Technology Committee held a hearing to consider the bill. Robert S. Bair, president of the Pennsylvania Building and Construction Trades Council, wrote a letter of support on behalf of the 130,000 members he represents.

“Pennsylvania has always been a leader in energy production. Generations of Pennsylvanians have worked in the energy sector and raised families through that work. We have an opportunity and obligation to stay a leader. But if we are going to do that, we can't sit still. New York, Maryland, Colorado, Missouri and Nevada are just some of the states that have created brand new public-private energy financing authorities like PEDA to prepare for this moment,” Bair said. “Passing H.B. 2338 would put Pennsylvanians to work and accelerate energy production across the Commonwealth. We urge its swift passage.”

Maryrose Myrtetus, executive director of the Philadelphia Green Capital Corp., spoke in support of the legislation.

“Our goal at PGCC is to attract at least $5 billion of federal funds to Southeast PA through a combination of grants, tax credits, rebates and lending capital, which could create up to 50,000 jobs,” Myrtetus said. “House Bill 2338 will allow PEDA to take full advantage of this historic investment and the opportunity to attract billions of dollars to the Commonwealth. That’s why this bill is so timely, and so very important.”

“House Bill 2338 would promote clean energy projects in Pennsylvania by bringing more federal funds into the state, which would, in turn, create good jobs, reduce energy costs for consumers, and improve energy resilience. Modernizing PEDA through a much-needed update to Act 280 of 1982 would be a game-changer for the Commonwealth,” said Geoffrey Bristow, PEDA COO.

The bill now heads to the Senate for consideration.