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This week in the House: greenhouse gas resolution, leaders talk budget

The House will decide today whether to give a preliminary endorsement of a letter to Congress stating Arizona's concern that federal greenhouse gas regulation will hurt the state's economy.

Rep. Lucy Mason, who chairs the Water and Energy Committee and sponsored HCR2023, said her biggest concerns with cap-and-trade and other programs aimed at reducing carbon emissions is that businesses will bear the brunt of the regulation.

"We must not over-regulate ourselves. We've got to be very, very careful," said Prescott Republican.

The legislation is not binding. It is a resolution, commonly referred to as "a postcard to Congress," noting that Arizona produces a relatively small amount of greenhouse gas and that new federal laws will drive up the cost of gasoline and electricity, disproportionately harming Arizona.

However, it states that Arizona is committed to fighting global climate change and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, provided it is done in "a manner structured to promote American jobs" and to rescue citizens and businesses from higher electricity and gas prices.

The Arizona House is scheduled to debate the measure on the floor today.

Meanwhile, budget discussions between Republican legislative leaders and Gov. Jan Brewer are expected to continue this week. The governor met with House Speaker Kirk Adams and Senate President Bob Burns several times last week after a House panel approved a budget created by Republicans.

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