20 May 2010 23:21 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS news)--US lawmakers may delay a vote on the US biodiesel blending tax credit intended for this week, sources said on Thursday.
Some lawmakers were upset that there was not enough revenue offsets for the estimated $190bn (€154bn) price tag on the American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act, a joint bill introduced on Thursday in the US House and Senate that includes the reinstatement of the $1/gal biodiesel blending tax credit, Congressional aides said. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) had not yet given its official cost estimate for the bill.
Reinstatement of the credit, the expiration of which at the end of 2009 contributed to a collapse in the US biodiesel industry, is crucial to refiners who for most of 2010 have struggled to compete with traditional diesel on pricing.
The protest over the estimated price tag has slowed progress of the bill, sources said. The House bill is now going to the chamber’s Rules Committee, which could have it on the floor for a vote by Tuesday, sources said.
The House and Senate passed separate legislation at the end of the last year that included the credit, but lawmakers had not reconciled their bills for final approval in time to extend the credit.
After that failure, sources in the biodiesel market had been wary of the current bills containing the credit even before learning that a vote on it would be delayed.
“We’ve been this close to the end zone before,” said National Biodiesel Board (NBB) spokesman Michael Frohlich. “There are still hurdles we have to clear.”
($1 = €0.81)
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