TRENTON, N.J. – Assembly Republicans are demanding that Gov. Phil Murphy disclose how much taxpayer money was already spent subsidizing Democrats’ unpopular offshore wind projects.
News broke late Tuesday night that Danish multinational energy company Orsted scrapped its plans to build two offshore wind projects, Ocean Wind 1 and Ocean Wind 2. The company cited supply chain issues and rising interest rates as its reasons for abandoning the projects. Murphy issued a statement calling into question the “credibility and competence” of Orsted, promising New Jersey would move ahead with his green energy plans with another contractor.
The 34-member Assembly Republican Caucus sent the governor a letter Wednesday, saying the question of credibility and competence extends to him and Trenton Democrats.
“On behalf of the taxpayers and ratepayers of New Jersey, we demand a full accounting and report to the legislature disclosing the amount of money to date the state has given to Orsted, including from the state Economic Development Authority, by date, purpose and amount for each grant, loan, tax credit, or any other financial assistance,” the Nov. 1 letter said.
Over objections from Republicans, shore residents and business owners, and some environmental groups, Murphy, flanked by Democrat leadership, signed an estimated $1 billion federal tax credit waiver for Orsted to much hoopla back in July. Murphy boasted to Chat Box host David Cruz in September, “This is going to happen, whether folks like it or not,” even as he ignored advocacy groups decrying huge energy cost increases for ratepayers, the decimation for New Jersey’s thriving fishing industry, as well as the dead marine mammals washing ashore near weekly.
The Orsted projects, comprising hundreds of wind turbines 15 miles off the shore, were expected to deliver 2,200 megawatts to 500,000 Garden State homes as part of Murphy’s master energy plan. However, this is just the latest East Coast offshore wind project to be cancelled as companies demand larger taxpayer subsidies to move ahead.
“You have called into question the company’s ‘credibility and competence,’ but taxpayers and ratepayers also require an answer about your credibility and competence prioritizing a multi-billion dollar foreign corporation instead of New Jersey residents,” the letter concluded.