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Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley formally unveiled his plan to expand wind power off the state's Eastern Shore. The measure has failed before but is expected to pass this year.
The plan would pave the way for an offshore wind farm off the coast of Ocean City, Md. and cost state residents as much as $1.50 per month, the Associated Press reports. O'Malley noted Tuesday that any large offshore wind project would require other states or the federal government to participate in some capacity.
Last year, the governor's plan failed by one vote in a Senate committee because of concerns that making utilities use the power generated by offshore wind would lead to an increase in monthly bills for ratepayers. But this year, Senate president Mike Miller made changes to the committee that will deal with the bill, removing senator Anthony Muse — who was against it — and replacing him with fellow Prince George's County Democrat Victor Ramirez, who views wind power more favorably.
Miller noted several reasons for the switch that had nothing to do with wind power, but did say he wanted the full Senate to finally vote on it this year.
The Senate already has 24 co-sponsors of this year's wind power bill, which is enough to get it passed. The House approved the measure last year, and is expected to again this year.