Two Democratic lawmakers say they’ve come up with a nifty way to fund renewable energy projects in Texas.

Take the money from funds administered by the governor.

Senate Bill 542 would allocate money from the governor’s Texas Emerging Technology Fund not already allocated for medicine, bio-technology and life science projects to go to projects that promote the development of low-carbon fuel, low-carbon electric generation strategies, energy efficiency and new ways to store power. State Sen. Kirk Watson, an Austin Democrat, filed the bill on Jan. 26.

House Bill 977 would set aside 20 percent of grants from the governor’s Texas Enterprise Fund to establish or expand projects “that have as their primary purpose the provision of energy derived from renewable energy technology.” State Rep. Lon Burnam, D-Fort Worth, filed the bill on Feb. 2.

The governor’s office appeared to be less than enthusiastic about the proposals. Speaking to a journalist from The Quorum Report, an online political journal, Perry spokeswoman Allison Castle questioned the wisdom of using the Texas Enterprise Fund “to say we have to have a certain number of these types of jobs or those types of jobs.” She also said that 12 percent of the total allocation form the Emerging Technology Fund already goes to projects related to clean energy.

R.A. "Jake" Dyer

R.A. "Jake" Dyer

Is a policy analyst for TCAP, a coalition of cities and other political subdivisions that purchase electricity in the deregulated market for their own governmental use. Because high energy costs can impact municipal budgets and the ability to fund essential services, TCAP, as part of its mission, actively promotes affordable energy policies. High energy prices also place a burden on local businesses and home consumers.

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