Dame: H715, the Upcoming Mystery Tax

Death of the Vermont Way of Life – visual commentary by FW Geer

by Paul Dame

Most Americans are familiar with the phrase “Taxation without Representation” but Vermont is about to embark on a bold experiment in “Taxation without Explanation.”

Bill H.715, also known as The Clean Heat Standard would intentionally make every kind of home heating fuel more expensive – but we just don’t know how to calculate the increase, or what the total amount will be.  It’s one of those common Democrat tactics where they have to pass the bill before they can find out what it does.

Legislators are abdicating their duty to evaluate policy before implementing it with this bill because they have outsourced the policy-crafting to an unelected, unaccountable board of appointees who will implement a tax that nearly every Vermonter will have to pay to keep warm in the winter.

Paul Dame

During a Committee discussion in Senate Natural Resources & Energy Senators admitted that they didn’t really know how much of a tax increase there would be, but that the fuel dealer would, or at least could, pass it on to every one of their Vermont customers.  As Sen. Chris Bray said “no one knows this for sure, because they haven’t worked out the system yet” (29:10)

Isn’t that what our legislators are supposed to be doing: working out the system?

The truth is that have the basic idea of what they want to accomplish.  They want to punish you and make you pay more for your fuel.  In a real gem at 30:08 Sen. MacDonald asks “By burning this fuel – you’re gonna pay extra….” to which Sen. Bray replied “That’s a yes”

The problem is that they have to figure out a way to make Vermonters pay more, without making it look like it was their idea.

So, just like they did with the Global Warming Solutions Act, Democrats have kicked the can down the road and passed the hard part of the job to someone they know can’t be fired by voters for not doing their job. 

It’s bad enough that this new Clean Heat Standard will result in every Vermonter paying more for heating oil, propane and natural gas – but what ought to be even more concerning is that the people making those decisions are not accountable to voters.

One of the fundamental tenants of a functioning Democracy is that the people know what their government is doing, and have input on whether or not they should keep doing it through regular elections.  The Clean Heat Standard bill separates the connection between the people and their law makers, and instead creates a new  triangle that serves to insulate law makers from making tough and unpopular laws.

Republicans believe Vermonters want clear and fair laws that anyone can understand to ensure that they have the kind of predictability, accountability and transparency that have been missing lately in the State house.  Sticking with Democrats will likely cause an abundance in new and innovative ways to shift more and more taxing authority away from legislators who can dodged the blame, and increasingly onto bureaucrats who aren’t subject to the will of the people through elections.

Please take a moment to contact your Senator today to let them know that this bill just has too many problems that haven’t been addressed yet in order to move forward with this mystery tax.

The author is an Essex Junction resident and chair of the Vermont Republican Party.

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5 replies »

  1. Climate Marxism – Control the means, output and (re)distribution of production by controlling the means and distribution of energy. It’s the marriage of the Degrowth Movement with Marxism.

  2. When will Vermonters take an interest in the goings on in Montpelier. Rise up and take notice instead of sitting on your hands

  3. While the legislature seems to have been told of miracles that we can use to heat our homes and deliver goods to us, I know of no such fairy dust to heat my home, nor power the vehicles that deliver the fuel I use to heat my home- The technology does not yet exist.
    In fact, this group of elitists is actually preventing me from upgrading the heating system in my home, by insisting that mini-split heat pumps are the only option. Hardly adequate advice- as these appliances do not efficiently produce heat below 20 degrees F, and require a standby fossil fueled generator for the times electricity cannot be delivered to my home. While the sun may always shine on the environmental evangelist liberal, my solar panels really don’t work well snow covered- or at night.
    I am fascinated that the current diatribe from our legislature is to convince the electorate that:
    Hydrocarbons are evil when delivered to your home, but fine is delivered to a electric generating plant.
    These same hydrocarbons are safe used in public transportation, but pose severe risk in anything not “public owned”.
    All of the world’s climate problems can be solved, but only if Vermonters step up and pay lots of taxes and fees.

  4. Bull Feathers

    Freeze in the dark! to save the planet.

    Let the State house try this first – next legislative session
    no heat, no hot water, no cafeteria ……………

  5. Would those thousands of Vermonters who don’t vote because ‘their one vote doesn’t make a difference’ PLEASE rise up and use your privilege to vote in November because your cumulative vote DOES make a difference. There literally are 1000’s who did not vote in the last election. Legislators are repeatedly voted back in so now, not only is nothing changing, but everything is getting worse as worrisome expensive rules & regs keep getting foisted upon us (such as this mystery tax). Folks, get ready to take out your wallets-again! More also to come after the Feds stop sending VT extra funds to help us. It’s time to retake the House & Senate and get rid of Marxist Dems & Progs who live in an illusionary world. Please vote Republican for change (and please take care that it’s not a Rhino). Oh and fear not as you’ve undoubtedly read all the lies about Republicans. The press either prints tall tales about R’s, they choose to believe only one side, or are remiss in their so-called journalistic investigative skills.

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