NEW YORK—(ENEWSPF)—November 12, 2015. Building on her commitment to defend coal miners’ health and retirement benefits against corporate intrusion, today Hillary Clinton released a comprehensive strategy for revitalizing coal communities across America.
Just last month, Clinton challenged Patriot Coal to reverse its effort to gut benefits for retired coal miners and their families through a bankruptcy plan – a move the company later abandoned. She also called on Peabody Energy to do the right thing in honoring its commitments to retired miners in a second bankruptcy case. Now, Clinton is announcing plans to commit $30 billion to protect the benefits coal miners have earned and to boost investments in economic diversification and job creation to make coal communities an engine for U.S. economic growth.
Among other provisions, Clinton’s plan would put in place a federal backstop that ensures retirees get the benefits they have earned and deserve, and expand these protections to any power plant or transportation company retiree who loses his or her benefits due to a coal market-related bankruptcy. She would also reform the black lung benefit program and safeguard funding for local schools suffering from revenue reductions due to coal decline.
“As President, I will make sure our country honors our commitments to coal miners and their families, who gave their careers, their health, and in some cases their lives to powering America’s economy,” said Hillary Clinton. “And I will invest for the future, by increasing federal investment to revitalize coal communities and partnering with the private sector to promote locally-driven business development and job creation.”
Additionally, Clinton would invest in building new infrastructure, expanding broadband access, and repurposing abandoned mines and retired power plants for new economic activity. She also would strengthen the New Markets Tax Credit, and establish a Coal Communities Challenge Fund that awards new competitive grants for small business development, education and job training, and housing, among other areas, in impacted coal communities.
For her full plan to revitalize coal communities, click here.