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Bill Would Create Pennsylvania Jobs, Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

PITTSBURGH, PA – U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) today unveiled legislation to speed the transition to natural gas as a vehicle fuel to create jobs in Pennsylvania and reduce our dependence on foreign oil.

“Pennsylvania’s natural gas reserves offer great potential for jobs and economic progress for the region,” said Senator Casey. “My legislation would help businesses in a variety of industries grow expand and sustain much-needed economic growth.”     

As oil prices rise, more companies, municipalities and consumers are already switching to vehicles running on natural gas. However, the cost of converting existing vehicles to run on natural gas or buying new vehicles can be prohibitive. 

That is why Senator Casey is introducing the Natural Gas Energy and Alternative Rewards (NGEAR) Act to speed the transition to natural gas fueled vehicles. This targeted legislation will create a new rebate program for the purchase of natural gas buses and extend tax credits for natural gas filling stations and vehicle fuel.

Senator Casey’s NGEAR Act will reduce costs for businesses and municipalities in the short-run and lead to long-term cost savings.

The natural gas industry is creating jobs and supporting economic development in Pennsylvania, and Senator Casey’s legislation will help the industry continue to grow.

Unveiling the legislation in Pittsburgh, Senator Casey was joined by representatives from CP Industries of McKeesport, which produces seamless pressure vessels used for the storage of pressurized natural gas. CP Industries has seen its business related to natural gas vehicles increase dramatically in recent years, leading to the creation of more than a dozen new jobs in the last several months alone.

Specifically, the NGEAR Act would:

  • Establish a rebate of 30%, up to $15,000, for the purchase of natural gas school and transit buses;
  • Extend the Alternative Fuel Tax Credit of $0.50 a gallon  for the retail sale of natural gas fuel for everyone who uses it to power vehicles through 2016; and, 
  • Extend a tax credit for installing commercial natural gas refueling infrastructure through 2016, totaling 30% of the system, up to $30,000.