Proposal 3 – Bad for Customers, Bad for Michigan

A message from David Mengebier, Senior Vice President of Governmental and Public Affairs and Chief Compliance Officer:

Amid the noise surrounding the fast-approaching Nov. 6 general election, messages can get muddled.

You might have seen television commercials opposing Proposal 3, the ballot proposal that would amend Michigan’s constitution and require the state to draw 25 percent of its electric supply from renewable sources such as wind and solar by 2025.

As part of a broad-based coalition formed to fight Proposal 3, Consumers Energy helps fund those ads because it opposes this harmful proposal.  At the same time, perhaps you’ve seen or heard us publicly tout our efforts to supply customers with more renewable energy.

Logically, you may wonder: Does Consumers Energy support renewable energy or not?  We do!

Let me be clear:  Renewable energy is good for Michigan in the right places and in the right increments.

 But we oppose Proposal 3.

Let me tell you why:

  • The cost burden is too heavy for our customers. They would pay an estimated $12 billion to meet this mandate, driving up bills for years to come.
  • Michigan already has a reasonable, affordable 10 percent renewable energy goal. Consumers Energy, the state’s largest supplier of renewable energy at 5 percent, is on track to meet that mark, in large part because of the two wind farms we’re developing. Our state should reach the 10 percent standard before reassessing its future energy needs.
  • The constitution is the wrong place for this mandate. Locking it into the constitution would eliminate the flexibility to meet unforeseen challenges and changes in the state’s energy market.

Proposal 3 isn’t realistic or reasonable. Unfortunately, it’s nothing more than a thinly disguised political campaign mounted by out-of-state special interests groups to advance their national policy agenda at the expense of Michigan electric customers. In fact, according to campaign finance reports filed with Michigan’s Secretary of State, nearly 90 percent of the money to advocate for Proposal 3 comes from outside our state.

That’s why I plan to vote NO on Proposal 3. I hope you will do the same and encourage your friends and neighbors to oppose Proposal 3.

In roughly one month, the election noise will die down. Until then, please remember: Consumers Energy supports renewable energy BUT we oppose Proposal 3.

We’re far from alone. The company is part of Clean Affordable Renewable Energy (CARE) for Michigan, which also includes the Michigan Chamber of Commerce, the Michigan State Utility Workers Council and many others.

Please visit http://careformich.com/take-action/page/join-care-consumers to join the CARE coalition as an individual. That’s where you also can find the latest news about Proposal 3, get help writing letters to the editor of your local newspaper, and get involved in the campaign against the measure.

Paid for with regulated funds by Consumers Energy Company, One Energy Plaza, Jackson, MI  49201.  Consumers Energy Company customer funds are not being used to oppose Proposal 3.