CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The first bill signed into law in this year’s regular legislative session repeals a current state law.

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin signed House Bill 2001 Tuesday repealing the state’s Alternative Renewable Energy Portfolio Act.

The act, approved in 2009 when current U.S. Senator Joe Manchin was governor, requires electric utilities to increase the percentage of alternative fuels they use in producing energy. Many members of the current legislature said the law was anti-coal.

Gov. Tomblin said Tuesday times have changed.

“In 2009 when the Legislature approved West Virginia’s Alternative Renewable Energy Portfolio, the Act had overwhelming support from business and industry,” Tomblin said in a prepared statement. “We understand economic drivers and factors change over time, and the Act as it was passed in 2009 is no longer beneficial for our state. After it passed both houses of the Legislature with overwhelming bipartisan support, I have signed House Bill 2001, repealing the West Virginia Alternative Renewable Energy Portfolio Act.”

Sen. Manchin heavily criticized the new Republican leadership in the legislature when the bill was first discussed last month but later backed off.

The utilities impacted by the law have repeatedly said they’ve already met the 2015 targets of the law and electricity rates had not increased because of it.

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  • Hillboy

    Fire Bill Raney! He admitted he helped write the law. How could someone from the WV Coal Association write a law that is so anti-coal? Someone that incompetent should be fired!

  • Rick

    This was a stupid do nothing bill to begin with.

  • J.R.

    My question is: if Joe Manchin is for the coal industry like he always claims, why would he have signed this into law to begin with? We let him get away with one. He's also for Obamacare; by the way, and is trying to limit gun ownership. I've always been a Manchin supporter, but the more I learn about him; the less I like him.

    • Skippy

      Ignorance is bliss.. If you would have done your homework you would have read here and elsewhere that the bill was passed with the support of the WV Coal Association. The last time I checked, it is the group formed and funded by the coal operators to promote pro-coal legislation in the legislature.
      As for obamacare, it was signed into law before Manchin was appointed to Congress. What he has said is that he supports keeping the provisions that are good and fixing those that are bad. 178,000 West Virginians and millions across the country have healthcare because of the ACA. Regardless of your position as to whether it should have become law, how are you going to now take healthcare alway from them?
      Finally, Manchin has never advocated taking away your guns. He did advocate preventing people who have mental deficiencies from being able to buy one. I have more than 20 guns. I'm a life member of the NRA. Why? Because I like guns. But not 1 has a large capacity magazine as I like most have no need for 1. Have you been to a gun show recently? I have and there's a lot there buying guns who in my opinion (for what it's worth) have no business with one. They just pay cash and out the door.
      You can like Manchin or not, makes no difference because he's there as long as he wants to be. However, before you make blanket uninformed statements at least get the facts right. Voter ignorance regardless of party is exactly why our country and state are in the shape we're in.

    • joey dirt

      trying to limit gun ownership? by what cosiging one bill? that did what exzactly? limit magazine capacity? how does that try to limit gun ownership again? not to mention that this country has about as many guns as people, was it the founding father intent that a person should be able to stockpile as many weapons as they please? or was it to own muzzle loaders to fight the goverment?

      you gun nuts lose your minds over your freedoms being "trampled" on. yet you are all for big goverment and more invasion into people lives when it comes to drugs. theres a correlation and i wish the people could see that.

  • Watching

    Manchians days are numbered, he's trying to survive thats why he backed off. Tomlin said this bill meant nothing now he's trying to make it look like he did something....your days are numbered too. Good job legislature!

    • Skippy

      Dream on knucklehead. Manchin's in as long as he wants to be in.

  • Skippy

    Congratulations Sen. Cole and Speaker Armstead! A do nothing law to repeal a do nothing law by a do nothing legislature. Almost half the legislative session gone and nothing to show for it.

  • Skippy


  • C. F. T.

    Take that NoJoe

  • Tom m.

    What can red do for you?.

  • Uncle Cecil

    Outstanding work by the Legislature and Governor!

    • Bear Bait

      To little to late. The damage has been done. Now IF Washington would do the samething you would have hope. But with that bunch up there thinking the Ozone is our's to save then no chance.

      • Uncle Cecil

        We do what we can here and keep up the pressure on the coal haters in DC.

  • Poe

    I just want to thank Tomblin and all the leaders that made this happen. Finally we have real leaders!

    • richard

      And by "real leaders" you mean what exactly?? Those who will do anything that you and your mind numbed robot republicans seem to think is right??
      I've got news for you and that is COAL IS DYING. I am not a tree hugger and I am not rejoicing in that fact. Coal has been fairly good to WV for many years, but coal is dying a slow and painful death. The sooner the state, you, and those like you realize that fact, the better off you will be.

      • Jesse's girl

        And if it weren't for bad luck, you'd have no luck at all.

  • victory

    May this be the beginning of West Virginia's drive to success, after decades of democrats and failure.

    • richard

      You do know Tomblin is a democrat, right?

    • Annie

      Amen to that!

    • David Kennedy

      Hear ! Hear !