Energy bill still stalled

E&E Daily (subs. req’d) reports:

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) yesterday said lawmakers have not reached a breakthrough on a compromise energy package but still plan to bring the legislation to the floor next month in some form.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was hoping energy legislation could be approved before the two-week Thanksgiving holiday, and the slow-moving talks showed signs of picking up last week.

Oil at record prices, but still no action. Click here to apply more pressure. Here’s the rest of the story:

But Hoyer said that while substantial work has been completed at the staff level, big-ticket issues remain to be addressed, including vehicle mileage standards, offsets, and renewable fuels and power.

“I think most of the basic agreements that can be reached by staff have been reached. I think members, committee chairs, other members, are now engaged in reaching some of the others,” Hoyer told reporters. “They are going to need to be resolved by committee chairmen and leadership.”

The House and Senate each approved sweeping energy bills over the summer that differ in key respects. The Senate measure would boost auto mileage standards and expand that national biofuels mandate. The House bill includes a renewable electric power mandate for utilities. It also expands renewable energy tax incentives and offsets the costs with higher oil industry taxes.

Hoyer said it was unclear whether the energy package would be split into multiple bills or not.

Congress is expected to break for two weeks tomorrow and return to work the week of Dec. 3.

Splitting into multiple bills would not be a major victory, I think.

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