Business Alliance Joins Diverse Coalition in Calling on Governor Brown to Repay Auction Proceeds Loan, and Invest in Jobs, Clean Energy and Clean Air.

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By Susan Frank, Director California Business Alliance for a Green Economy

Earlier today I was pleased to represent the more than 1,260 members of the California Business Alliance in calling upon Governor Jerry Brown to make good on his promise to invest in clean energy and work to reduce climate impacts.

In this morning’s telepresser, I joined a diverse coalition of interests representing California businesses, along with local government, public health, transportation, environmental, social justice and natural lands organizations from across the state, in sending a clear message to the Governor.

Specifically, we respectfully asked Governor Brown to repay the $500 million loan of cap and trade auction proceeds to the general fund in the current budget, and make good on commitments to voters by investing these and future proceeds, as required by law, in projects that grow the economy, create jobs in the communities that need them most, reduce carbon pollution and improve air quality. The details of our request to the Governor can be found in this letter signed by 93 businesses and organizations.

California businesses know that investing half a billion dollars in smart, targeted initiatives will yield significant economic benefits and serve as an important signal to companies that “California means business” when it comes to investing in the bright future of its clean energy economy.

California has an historic opportunity to make the investments that will build up our businesses and our communities, and cement California’s position as a global leader in the clean economy. It also happens to be the right thing to do.

The message is timely, as the Governor is preparing his 2014-2015 budget request and the state’s Legislative Analyst has issued a new assessment, projecting a $5.6 billion surplus by June 2015 and rising surpluses for years to come. A budget surplus along with the Governor’s stated commitment to address the urgent threat of climate change translates into an imperative to invest proceeds now.

Just yesterday, the White House hosted local leaders for the inaugural meeting of the President’s Climate Task Force of which Governor Brown is a member. I would ask Governor Brown to continue to demonstrate his state and national leadership by implementing the state’s AB 32 cap and trade auction proceeds investment strategy in ways that will bolster businesses and benefit communities across California.

© California Business Alliance for a Clean Economy

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