Anti-carbon tax activists blast Vermont legislators for conflicts of interest

From left to right, Reps. Rebecca White, D-Hartford; Mike McCarthy, D-St. Albans; and Kari Dolan, D-Waitsfield

Supporters of a new boycott against Vermont companies that support a carbon tax say three state legislators have conflicts of interest on energy policy because of their ties to SunCommon.

“How are Vermonters supposed to be heard when their legislature has conflicts of interest such as its relationship to SunCommon, the solar energy company based in Waterbury,” J.T. Dodge, of the grassroots group No Carbon TAX Vermont, told True North in a recent interview.

Shayne Spence

J.T. Dodge: “How are Vermonters supposed to be heard when its legislature has conflicts of interest such as its relationship to SunCommon, the solar energy company based in Waterbury.”

“We citizens should all take note that Rep. Michael McCarthy and Rep. Rebecca White were employees of SunCommon, and Rep. Katherine ‘Kari’ Dolan is married to Chach Curtis, CFO of SunCommon,” he said.

Dodge’s group is a vocal opponent of a carbon tax in Vermont. However, it supports electric vehicles and says climate change is real. The group has been growing through social media platforms such as Facebook.

“Working class Vermonters already struggle with the price of living here. Our group is against making their lives more challenging,” Dodge said.

Despite several efforts to reach Reps. McCarthy, White and Dolan, none of the legislators returned TNR’s requests for comment.

Angelo Napolitano, a No Carbon TAX Vermont activist from Moretown, says he’s not surprised legislators and business leaders involved in green legislation in Montpelier ignore journalists and citizens who question their insider influence.

“Something like 83 percent of hard-copy news and television news in Vermont is backed by far-left billionaire George Soros,” Napolitano told TNR. “So if Soros is giving the local mainstream media whatever (amount of money), legislators and businesses are going to ignore people like me.”

Dodge said he hopes the boycott calls attention to what he considers to be unethical practices in the capitol.

RELATED: Anti-carbon tax groups call for boycott of 7 Vermont companies

“Vermonters should be very suspect of the energy related bills moving through the House,” Dodge said. “The climate solutions being discussed at the Vermont Statehouse come off (as being) activist at best.”

The boycott, announced earlier this month, was spearheaded by VT802 Alliance and was quickly embraced by some members of No Carbon TAX Vermont.

Ethan Allen Institute

J.T. Dodge: “No Carbon TAX Vermont supports the boycott as they promote and support carbon tax schemes like the ESSEX Plan.”

“No Carbon TAX Vermont supports the boycott as certain business leaders promote and support carbon tax schemes like the ESSEX Plan, which include a carbon dioxide cap and trade component,” Dodge told TNR.

While both Vermont grassroots citizen-action groups have never joined forces on other statewide issues or candidate endorsements, they find themselves in agreement on a boycott against seven Vermont firms supporting the carbon tax.

John de Bruin, founder of VT802 Alliance and the prime organizer of the boycott, believes that “financial tax kickbacks and incentives” were made from the state to the seven companies named on the boycott list.

“I’m sure they were arranged by the same caucus group involved with pushing the carbon bills,” de Bruin told TNR last week. “ …  I know for a fact that Rep. White is still listed as an employee of SunCommon. I checked the website yesterday. I would 100-percent guarantee there is a serious case of conflict here.”

However, while Dodge’s and de Bruin’s accusations may ring true to some, they are more difficult to prove. Some argue that lawmakers with links to “green” companies should recuse themselves on bills that may enrich the industry.

Dodge says the lawmakers are directly engaged in activities that benefit their industry.

“Kari (Dolan) has sponsored and co-sponsored carbon related bills such as H.18 and H.467, acts relating to siting jurisdictions over wind-powered electric generation,” he said. He also noted that Rep. White has been involved in crafting H.91, an act relating to a cap and trade program for greenhouse gas emissions caused by transportation, heating, and other energy use. He added that Rep. McCarthy was involved with crafting H.51, an act relating to restricting fossil-fuel infrastructure.

Last week, Dodge, Napolitano and several others involved with No Carbon TAX Vermont met privately with Gov. Phil Scott in his office to voice their concerns about the negative impacts of a carbon tax on all levels of the state’s economy.

“Governor Scott didn’t understand us at first,” Dodge told TNR. “He thought we are climate-change deniers and that we are against electric cars. We are neither. We believe in these things. We wanted to tell him about our plans for the state — that there are things we can do to lower our carbon footprint without such a draconian tax plan.”

According to Dodge, Vermont can start right away by giving consumers access to their home Smart Meter data so they can make their own energy use decisions throughout the day. This data would help residents save money and energy. He also recommends tree-planting to help sequester carbon.

“The common belief is that we need to tax citizens to deal with the carbon issue. Wrong. We don’t need to do it that way,” he said. “We’re also trying to fight the Vermont businesses supporting a carbon tax — the boycott is part of this. These companies have powerful brands and lots of money, (yet) their CEOs speak powerfully on how to tax us.”

Napolitano said the meeting with Scott was a good start to let the governor know citizens are overtaxed already. He also said Vermonters would likely sue over a carbon tax, should it be enacted.

“All this will eventually end up in the Vermont Supreme Court like the health insurance mandate and the gun ban,” he said. “The everyday Vermonter working two jobs has to pay Attorney General T.J. Donovan to defend the state’s side in the Supreme Court. … So any such state mandates coming down the pike mean that taxpayers will have to pay either way, whether they (mandates) are put into law or fought against, and thrown out, in the court.”

Lou Varricchio is a freelance reporter for True North Reports. Send him news tips at lvinvt@gmx.com.

Images courtesy of Shayne Spence and Ethan Allen Institute
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22 thoughts on “Anti-carbon tax activists blast Vermont legislators for conflicts of interest

  1. CARBON CARBON CARBON
    Don’t ya just hate to constantly hear about CARBON CARBON CARBON ?! The foundation of life forms on this planet. Why is there such an effort to restrict its abundance to the plants that produce the foods we eat, the materials we use to build, clothe ourselves, make stored solar energy available and usable?

    This discussion would seem to be purely a political one. I suggest a web search for “carbon drought” for some answers.

    • Not to mention Carbon Dioxide is essential to producing oxygen for human consumption. There are plenty of trees and other vegetation to keep Carbon Dioxide at a reasonable level.

  2. TAX, TAX, TAX!!! Will ever end???? Will it ever end??? If for what ever reason, the carbon tax goes away, you can bet your biffy it will return under another name. And these clowns expect a lousy $10,000 will be sufficient inducement to uproot prosperous families to relocate in Vermont for the privilege of paying higher taxes. It’s this kind of stupidity which got us in this bind in the first place.

  3. TAX, TAX, TAX!!! W ever end???? When will it ever end??? If for whatIer reason, the carbon tax goes away, you can bet your biffy it will return under another name. And these clowns expect a lousy $10,000 will be sufficient inducement to uproot prosperous families to relocate in Vermont for the privilege of paying higher taxes. It’s this kind of stupidity which got us in this bind in the first place.

  4. one.bind in thhe firstill it ever end???? If for what ever reason, the carbon tax goes away, you can bet your biffy it will return under another name. And these clowns expect a lousy $10,000 will be sufficient inducement to uproot prosperous families to relocate in Vermont for the privilege of paying higher taxes. It’s this kind of stupidity which got us in this bind in the first place.

  5. They can deny all they want but our Constitution clearly states that this action is a Conflict of Interest. From Vermont Constitution ss12-Fees for advocating bills etc……………………………………………………………………………………….”No member of the General Assembly shall, directly or indirectly receive any fee or reward, to bring forward or advocate any bill, petition, or other business to be transacted in the legislature or advocate any cause as counsel in either House of legislation expect when employed in behalf of the state” #802VTALLIANCE

  6. We have so many people lobbying then becoming representatives. Representatives then becoming lobbyists. People who work for lobbyists, then getting hired in government. Just look to the VNRC and VPIRG and you’ll find many examples.

    Then you have cute stunts like this. Vermont Conservation Voters grade our representatives on how they vote, putting out notices to the citizens so they can educate the public about who’s doing right with the environment. Sounds legit huh?

    Board members for Vermont Conservation Voters have been the same as board members for the VNRC. VNRC, which claims to be “non-profit” is filled with lobbyists. Vermont Conservation Voters grade our representatives on the bills that the VNRC is trying to pass. Pretty convenient huh?

    I’ve posted many times about this “convenient” situation on Vermont Digger, only to be deleted again and again and again……ironically got the information from their site.

  7. The “Illuminati” are incessant in their attempts at manipulating the masses to their wishes and this global warming threat is just a part of their “ruse”. I don’t claim to be an expert, but I have a degree in Geology and am amazed at the evolution of life and the physical changes of this planet going on through millions of years. Just 14,000 years ago, there was thousands of feet of ice on top of us. Bottom line, the Earth and its inhabitants have and will continue to change. We obviously need to take care of our home. Remember the crying Indian as he looked at the polluted river commercial several years ago?
    The liberal, progressive, leftist activist or what ever they like to call themselves are just systematically trying to fill their coffers with their hypocrisy. Observe the development and traffic flows in Vt the last 30 yrs or more. Enough!

  8. Thank you for your great work. I was considering home solar. Now I know what company I will not be considering.

    Vermont does not need any more taxes that impact our citizens and businesses.

    Climate Change is a natural cycle that has been going in since the Earth formed an atmosphere. To base doomsday scenarios on a few hundred years of data isn’t sound science nor are atmospheric models.

    Want proof of natural climate cycle. Look to the soils and rocks. Glaciers over Vermont miles thick about 15000 years ago where did they go?

    They melted. They will be back someday. The Earths atmosphere and eco system are interconnected and ibteract. We don’t amount to anything in the big picture.

    It’s all about $$$ and political power.

  9. Understanding the influence (somewhat) of these legislators:
    1. Paid salaries by the taxpayers
    2. Paid per deim for undocumented “expenses” by taxpayers
    3. Perhaps getting funded by Soros
    4. Associated with a company, and (perhaps) getting paid 4X “money dippers”
    5. Informing SunCommon of pending anti-SunCommon legislation
    6. Legislating to enhance SunCommon’s. existence and money .
    7. Passing legislation to increase taxes
    8. Being “Democrats” assures they can have personal and money gains (re-elected).
    9. Unethical practices, the face of corruption
    10. Conspiring for the downfall of Vermont, via
    pursuit of total control of Vermonters given their legislation Bills.
    11. Status and positions exempt them from outside law suits
    12. Being unanswerable to the public for their actions
    13. Avoid scrutiny
    14. Introduce “Feel Good” legislation, nothing practical or of common sense.
    43 by McCarthy, 37 by Dolan, 44 by White Total 124

    Typical Socialists, money, power, control. self importance and corruption, the Montpelier swamp

    • Vermonters owe NO Carbon Tax Vermont and 802VT Alliance a debt of gratitude for their hard work on our behalf in bringing these SunCommon legislative moles out into the sunlight of day. What a scam being perpetrated on the people of Vermont. Where are the people’s advocates in the legislature?

      Thank you, True North Reports for being our 4th Estate, sadly and largely missing otherwise from Vermont’s media.

  10. Total corruption. This has Soros fingerprints all over it, hence ““Something like 83 percent of hard-copy news and television news in Vermont is backed by far-left billionaire George Soros,” Napolitano told TNR. “So if Soros is giving the local mainstream media whatever (amount of money), legislators and businesses are going to ignore people like me.”

    This explains VT Digger’s status (Soros money?) as well, you can smell the odor in Montpelier. Include Baruth along with these three birds White, McCarthy and Dolan. There shouldn’t be any conflict of interest.

    Also good luck with the Supreme Court, sitting biased lawyers all, like ducks in their thinking, movements and procedures, a false world.

  11. 4.5 million acres of forest in Vt. A very conservative claim is 1 acre of forest sequesters 1 average person’s carbon footprint. (@ 9 tons co2 per yr.) At 624k of over taxed population, Is it prudent to punish hard working Vermonters with a MULTITUDE of carbon taxes?

    • Fred,
      An acre of HEALTHY forest sequesters about 1 metric ton of CO2, per US-EPA and by the VT Agency of Natural Resources. Just google.
      VT has about 10 million ton of CO2 emissions per year, per ANR.
      Whereas VT has 4.2 million acres of forest, the ecosystems of a large percentage are damaged due to acid rain, manmade intrusions and destruction, such as for power lines and logging roads and development.
      As a result, ANR claiming 4.2 million metric ton/y of CO2 are sequestered by VT forest is excessive and a fantasy, aka, wishful dreaming.

    • A very important note for all Vermonters; thank you for pointing it out Fred McCullough.

      You are a solid member of the No Carbon Tax Vermont group.

      #NoCarbonTaxVermont

  12. The worst of the climate change theory is NASA is reporting the ice in greenland and Antarctica is actually increasing — which means the theory is just science.

  13. White, Dolan and McCarthy all need to be recalled and tossed out of office. Their flagrant conflict of interest and violation of their Oath of Office is a slap in the fact for all Vermonters. Corrupt misuse of their office for monetary gains for their private enterprise (SunCommon). Do they really expect to sell more of their solar panels by adding a tax to the only reliable source of energy we have access to??
    #802VTALLIANCE

    • John

      My wife and I would like to join 802VTAlliance but I do not, and never will, utilize social media.
      We were in Montpelier on Saturday morning hoping to make connections, but apparently the
      rally had been cancelled due to weather. Oh well, one of the disadvantages of not being on social media.
      If the rally is to happen at a later date, kindly let us know. We would like to be there.
      We can be contacted at my email address, rickscarsvt@gmail.com

    • Might be interesting to check out. The PACs that supported their massive mailing campaigns. I thought PACs were not supposed to coordinate with the candidates? How could you not coordinate with the candidates when two people were on the same flyer? They had to get permission. Vermont Conservation Voters….an arm of VNRC…keep digging guys, we have copies if you need them. Mailed out at least three times, huge money spent, now we know why.

  14. I’ll take Corruption for 1000 CHenry..
    The leftist fascists only see corruption if their not benefiting from it. Anyone
    promoting an agenda that would create another worthless 12 million dollar a year agency doesn’t deserve a red cent from overtaxed Vermonters. Hoping these company’s take a spot on the Moving out of VT. train very shortly .

  15. What’s the current phrase … Oh yeah, collusion? Montpelier, if you have a “D” by your name, it’s not a problem, it’s for the Agenda. Just call it what it is, conflicts of interest, collusion or corruption.

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