An advocacy group says the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant in Vernon is not paying its fair share of taxes to the state.
Vermont Public Interest Research Group conducted a study comparing property taxes paid to the kilowatt hours generated by more than forty electric generating facilities in Vermont. VPIRG argues that Yankee's tax per kilowatt hour ratio is significantly lower than the rate paid by wind, hydro, and wood generating facilities. The research group believes that a generation-based tax would level the playing field -- by requiring all generators to pay similar rates.
"That is a remarkably different approach than what we've seen and heard from the government and the legislators who are trying to provide new incentives to get new generators built and provide new job growth in the renewable energy industry here in the state," said VPIRG representative James Moore.
Officials from Vermont Yankee argue that they are already paying more than their fair share in state taxes, more than $10 million a year. The company also says the VPIRG study is far too simplistic -- because nuclear energy produces far more power than wind and hydro facilities -- at a much lower cost.