Gov. Martin O'Malley is expected to re-introduce his offshore wind energy bill in the upcoming session, but politicians aren't the only ones who need more convincing if the bill is to succeed.
State Sen. Jim Mathias represents three counties on the Eastern Shore, and in the 40 years he's lived here, he's learned how conservative and cautious the people are. He says, when it comes to selling the merits of an offshore wind farm 12 miles off the coast of Ocean City, the message needs to be much clearer.
"If Maryland users are going to pay the bill, we want to make sure we are the beneficiary of the jobs and the capital investments here," say Mathias.
Mathias co-sponsored O'Malley's bill last year, which saw its early momentum sputter out before it even got to the legislative floor.
However, this year could be a different story, as the Senate Finance Committee has already met twice to discuss the bill's many hurdles, including government subsidies, the initial costs, and the consumer surcharge.
But Mathias says Eastern Shore residents want to know what offshore wind would do to their wallets, before they will get behind what it could do for the planet.