BREAKING: VA Lawmakers Show Appetite for Competitive Energy Market
January 31, 2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

CONTACT:

Cassady Craighill, Clean Virginia Communications Director

cassady@cleanvirginia.org, 828-817-3328

BREAKING: VA Lawmakers Show Appetite for Competitive Energy Market 

Del. Keam, Del. Ware lead bipartisan effort to break up utility monopolies in Virginia 

January 30, 2020 

Richmond, VA — A House subcommittee expressed interest tonight in the Virginia Energy Reform Act, a robust bill that would reshape Virginia’s energy market from one dominated by utility monopolies to one open to retail competition. The House Labor and Commerce energy subcommittee moved to carry the bill over until next session, a noteworthy move considering the political influence of Virginia’s dominant utility monopoly, Dominion Energy. The subcommittee’s move will allow the legislature to continue discussions of reform and consider the bill again in the 2021 session. The Virginia Energy Reform Coalition, a lead proponent of the bill said this in response, 

“Virginia legislators proved today that they are finally ready to consider a post-monopoly energy market in Virginia. Thanks to the bipartisan leadership of Democratic Del. Mark Keam and Republican Del. Lee Ware, lawmakers broke through what once seemed like an impossible barrier – considering Virginia’s energy market on the customers’ terms, not the terms of Dominion Energy.”

“Reforming our energy market into one in which customers are in control will lower prices, protect low-income communities, and unleash market innovation. We look forward to working with legislators and stakeholders in the coming months to ensure that legislation to power Virginia with a 21st-century energy market is as strong as possible. When the Commonwealth embraces a competitive energy market, Virginia can start leading the pack towards a better energy future powered by lower energy rates, job growth, and innovation.”

Del. Keam described the bill as a “pro-consumer, pro-competition, and a good governance” measure. Former economic advisor to FERC Chairman Pat Wood Rob Gramlich also spoke in support of the bill. 

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