Dear Editor,

$1.77 billion - This is how many American tax dollars Iberdrola has received under Section 1603 of the Recovery Act. President Obama claimed that the act would help get Americans back to work. However, a 2013 congressional report compared the tax dollars that companies, like Iberdrola, received to the jobs created. The report concluded:

This investigation demonstrates that the Section 1603 grant program failed to meet this goal. Billions of dollars have filled the coffers of overseas firms while the evidence of the promised permanent jobs and economic growth here in the United States is scarce. The modest job creation figures attributed to Section 1603 have come at an enormous cost when federal deficits are being financed with trillions of dollars in borrowing. Despite its being billed as a “jobs program,” actual figures detailing permanent jobs created by the grant program are difficult to find, with some experts putting the price per job at $1.2 million. In some cases, it is unclear whether the program actually stimulated development in the renewable energy sector or simply subsidized projects that the private sector would have come around to on its own. And it is startling to discover that nearly one quarter of the $16 billion approved in renewable energy projects under Section 1603 as of December 2012 have gone to subsidiaries of some of the largest, and already best-situated, foreign energy companies.

A Washington Free Beacon article referred to the tax dollars given to companies like Iberdrola as “corporate welfare.” I agree with this assertion given the fact that the wind energy industry has grown dependent upon the American Tax Payer for its very existence. The history of the Production Tax Credit (PTC) has proven this.

This is why we must contact our Van Wert County Commissioners at (419) 238-6159 and request that they vote no on tax abatements (in lieu of property taxes) for the proposed Dog Creek Wind Farm. Iberdrola has received enough of our tax dollars and its time they start paying their fair share.

Mark A. Wilson