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Vermonters Brace for 70¢ / Gallon Heating Fuel Jump in January

The Affordable Heat Act is a bitterly ironic name for a new Vermont law that will have a chilling effect on Vermonters come January of 2025.

Vermont Bill S.5 S.5 seeks to ease the transition to clean energy by ensuring that all Vermonters can access cleaner, more affordable heat by forcing Vermont heating fuel companies to purchase credits in order to continue selling heating fuel.

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The funds raised are supposed to assist all Vermonters to make their homes energy efficient, but the exact plan as to how that will work is not yet known.

The cost of those credits, however, will be passed on to consumers, raising prices by an estimated seventy-cents per gallon.  

Some Vermont heating fuel companies have already sent letters out to their customers warning them of the price increase, resulting in a steady stream of calls into the Governor’s office, voicing concern. 

Compass Vermont asked Governor Scott about the legislation. 

“I vetoed that bill and was overridden.  The seventy-cents doesn’t surprise me,” he said. 

“We have a payroll tax that is going into place in July. We have a 20% increase in DMV fees. We have all kinds of taxes being proposed by the legislature at this point in time. It all adds up.”

“It’s like this drip, drip, drip and it’s increasing the cost of living in Vermont and forcing people to make decisions about where they live.”

“The knee jerk reaction of the legislature to any problem is “let’s just raise another tax and fix it.”

When discussing the steady volume of calls the Governor’s office fields from concerned Vermonters about the coming  increase in fuel costs, Scott said, “people are scared, to be honest with you. 

They just don’t know what they are going to do because they don’t know where to go.  And they know these fees and taxes are coming right down on them. They’re just scared and we have to do all we can to prevent it from happening.  

The bill requires one more vote before being enacted in January, giving Vermonters who oppose the escalating costs time to contact their legislators with their point of view. 

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