Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chair Frank H. Murkowski (R-Alaska) has written a letter to Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin regarding regulation changes the Internal Revenue Service is considering, which would allow publicly owned utilities to expand use of tax-exempt bonds to compete against privately owned utilities.
Murkowski asked the IRS not to issue new regulations giving publicly owned utilities a "special competitive advantage" by allowing the companies to issue tax-exempt bonds. "This is a matter for the Congress to decide, not the IRS," concluded Murkowski.
Congressional review of the electric industry includes a report by the Joint Committee on Taxation on all federal tax provisions related to the electric power industry, he said. "This report will review these matters for investor-owned, publicly owned and cooperatively owned utilities, as well as for the other participants in the electric power industry," Murkowski wrote.
He said that existing tax-exempt bonds might already be in jeopardy due to ongoing changes in the electric power industry and regulations adopted by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission regulations.
Articles found on this page are available to Internet subscribers only. For more information about obtaining a username and password, please call our Customer Service Department at 1-800-368-5001.