Gov. John Kasich has vetoed an ill-advised decision by the lame-duck legislature that would have effectively put a mandate on renewable energy development on hold for another two years.
His veto of House Bill 554 reinstates the mandates approved by legislators in 2008 that were temporarily put on hold two years ago.
Kasich signed the "freeze" measure in 2014, but has since stated repeatedly that he would strike down any further extension. We commend him for standing by his word.
Encouraging alternative energy generation options, such as solar power and wind power, is a wise move not only from a conservation standpoint but also as a means of demonstrating that Ohio is receptive to new energy sources.
The renewable-energy mandate requires utilities to phase in a gradually increasing percentage of power generated through alternative sources, such as solar power and wind power, reaching 12.5 percent -- one-eighth -- of their production capacity by 2027.
The 2014 legislation froze that target at 2.5 percent.
In his veto message, Kasich noted that encouraging alternative energy sources can be a selling point for Ohio as a business location. Discouraging those options, he said, could cause some industries, especially high tech firms, from coming to the Buckeye State.
Energy options also enable businesses and homeowners to reduce their own costs through increased energy efficiency. "Going green" will pay dividends in the long run.
"Voluntary" mandates are likely to be ignored, and Kasich recognized this.
By vetoing HB 554, the governor made a clear statement that the status quo is unacceptable.
That's a progressive attitude, one that demonstrates his willingness to rise above the politics of pandering that appears to motivate a great deal of legislation at the state level.
We also commend the governor for vetoing Senate Bill 329, another product of the lame duck legislative frenzy, that would have required virtually all state agencies to be reauthorized every four years.
This so-called "sunset" measure was an invitation for punitive action under the guise of "small government," and Kasich appears to have recognized that.
The governor put leadership over partisanship in his decisions on this legislation.