Many times we hear legislation moving through Congress is supposed to create jobs and help the economy grow, but too often the rhetoric does not match reality. Unfortunately, we're seeing this pattern again. The Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade bill promises more jobs and a better economy but delivers just the opposite.
The bill, which barely cleared the House in June and is now before the Senate, would cost Missourians almost 60,000 jobs and wipe out more than 2.4 million jobs nationwide, according to a recent National Association of Manufacturers study.
The same study also finds energy prices would skyrocket for all businesses and individual households. By 2030, Missouri families would lose more than $1,300 in disposable income, gasoline prices would increase by nearly 25 percent, electricity costs would jump 64 percent and the amount we pay for natural gas would increase more than 75 percent. In tough economic times, Congress should not increase the cost of basic living expenses.
Higher energy prices, fewer jobs and loss of industrial output would further strain Missouri's state budget and require additional cuts or increased taxes on all Missourians. Schools, universities and hospitals will likely experience a 28 to 42 percent increase in energy costs by 2030, not including additional costs to operate school buses.
Missouri business owners and residents should be deeply disturbed by this bill. Missourians should call Sen. Claire McCaskill and tell her that cap-and-trade will hurt Missouri business, kill Missouri jobs and cost Missouri families.
RAY McCARTY, President, Associated Industries of Missouri, Jefferson City, Mo.