With Senator Max Baucus’ (D-MT) confirmation as ambassador to China, Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Mary Landrieu (D-CA) assumed the chairmanship of the Senate Finance and Energy and Natural Resources Committees, respectively, last week. Also part of the committee leadership shuffle include Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) succeeding Senator Landrieu as chair of the Small Business Committee and Senator John Tester (D-MT) succeeding Senator Cantwell as head of the Indian Affairs Committee; the Senate approved the moves February 13. As the senators take some time to organize their staffs and legislative agendas, Senator Landrieu has already pledged to promote domestic energy production, while Senator Wyden has said that he hopes to begin work on the tax extenders package as a precursor to addressing comprehensive tax reform at a later date.
Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Rob Portman (R-OH) announced last week that they would formally reintroduce their energy efficiency package (S. 1392) the week of February 24, with Senate action likely to follow in March. The measure will include ten bipartisan amendments in an effort to garner additional support. House leadership has taken an interest in similar bipartisan legislation (H.R. 2126) from Representatives Peter Welch (D-VT) and David McKinley (R-WV).
For more on the latest energy and clean technology regulatory and legislative developments please see ML Strategies’ most recent Energy and Environment Update.