Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster

Area Officials React to TVA Decision to Retire Two Units

tva 300WESTERN KENTUCKY (11/14/13) — The reaction to TVA's decision to shut down two major coal-fired units at its Paradise plant in Muhlenberg County left many in shock Thursday. Soon after the decision was made to retire two of three units, and bring in natural gas units, area politicians let their voices be heard.

Muhlenberg County Judge-Executive Rick Newman serves in the county hardest hit by the cut backs. He has no illusions about what the loss of the two units jeopardizing the county's coal mine jobs.

"Anytime you lose the amount of jobs we're going to lose, it has a very long term impact,” said Newman. “Coal severance revenues will decline. Plus other surrounding counties will be affected. On the positive side, we're going to get a $1.2 billion gas-fired (electrical production). Plus, KU will be building a $700 million dollar plant. That's $2 billion in construction. But I keep thinking about those many long term coal-based jobs that will be gone forever."

State Rep. Brent Yonts,(D) House District 15, represents Muhlenberg County, where the TVA Paradise Plant has been a mainstay for well-paying jobs for decades. Yonts drove to Oxford, Miss., for the TVA Board meeting to remind them once more of the impact this change will have.

Yonts told Surfky News afer that meeting that he believes the board understood the consequence.

"What they said was they had to shut down units one and two due to environmental regulations,” said Yonts. “They do plan to keep unit three running, which is the biggest. But the bottom line is, at least 200 current TVA employees will be gone. Their average salary is around $74,000 a year. That comes to $15 million spent in the area's economy annually. When the gas-fired plant gets going, there will be about 675 to 700 coal miners out of work for good. That means a total of at least 2,500 to 3,000 people will lose their jobs. That doesn't even include the coal severance funds we'll lose. If you add it all up, that's a $300 million impact on the Muhlenberg and surrounding counties."

Webster County Judge Executive James R. Townsend told Surfky News that this decision will not just affect Muhlenberg County, but counties throughout western Kentucky including Webster.

"Webster County will be affected by the TVA decision, without a doubt,” he said. “We have workers at TVA and many coal miners who help supply the plant. I'm also concerned about eastern Kentucky. They now has around 5,000 coal miners laid off. And, if you look at the national scene, there is talk of shipping coal from
the Western U.S. to China."

"When you start pushing everything toward natural gas, (natural) gas will go up. It's all a matter of supply and demand. It's a fact, gas will go up." he added.

Yonts said that this decision is pretty much irreversible.

"There is very little that can be done to reverse this decision. Getting a $1.2 billion natural gas plant is a nice consolation prize, but it's not a very happy time for those 3,000 people who will now be out of good-paying jobs." he said.

For the original story, click here.

SurfKY News
Paul McRee

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Most Read This Week

October 17, 2014 11327

UK Women's Soccer Welcomes Ole Miss, No. 5/4…

in General Sports For All Sites by UK Athletics
October 15, 2014 3374

Family Business, Graphics Pros to Open Friday

in Top News For All Sites by Shawn Freels
October 15, 2014 3252

Chamber Meeting and More Announced

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Dorothy Walker
October 17, 2014 3108

Single Vehicle Collision Results in One Injury

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper S. C. Recke
October 15, 2014 3023

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Oct. 15, 2014

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
October 15, 2014 2785

Woman Arrested for Domestic Dispute in the Street

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
October 17, 2014 2556

Woman Arrested at Taco Bell for DUI

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
October 16, 2014 2329

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Oct. 16, 2014

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
October 18, 2014 2310

Muhlenberg County Celebrates New Farmer’s Market

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
October 19, 2014 2302

Kentucky Energy Department Releases Virtual Solar…

in General News For All Sites by Dick Brown

Trending Now

October 19, 2014 2302

Kentucky Energy Department Releases Virtual Solar…

in General News For All Sites by Dick Brown
October 19, 2014 1378

Right-to-Work: The Right Message for Kentucky’s…

in General News For All Sites by Jim Waters
October 19, 2014 1217

Avoid Halloween Makeup Allergies and Other…

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
October 19, 2014 1126

Key to Cooking with Pumpkins

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
October 20, 2014 1030

Man Charged for Assaulting Pregnant Wife

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
October 19, 2014 1022

The Legend of Jack-o'-Lanterns

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
October 20, 2014 848

KU and LG&E to Fund Qualified Tree-Planting…

in General News For All Sites by Cliff Feltham
October 19, 2014 839

Outdoor Truths - Oct. 19, 2014

in General News For All Sites by Gary Miller
October 20, 2014 802

Fall Frolic at Nature Station

in Lakes News by Land Between The Lakes
October 20, 2014 763

Veterans Honored Nov. 8-11 at Land Between The…

in Lakes News by Land Between The Lakes

SurfKY News Group, Inc.
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431
270.452.2727 (phone)
  •  270.452.2249 (fax)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social fbsocial twsocial yt
social gpsocial flrsocial rss