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November 11, 2011

Report: Industry spent millions as Congress weighed fate of subsidies

The biofuels industry has poured millions of dollars into lobbying as Congress debates whether to end a key ethanol tax credit, according to a report released yesterday by a right-leaning Washington think tank.
The group, Taxpayers for Common Sense, documents some $31 million spent on lobbying this year alone by companies and groups affiliated with the biofuels industry. The industry has also put more than $12.5 million into campaign contributions in the past three election cycles toward members of this Congress, the group also found.
Since 2004, Congress has given more than $30 billion in subsidies to the ethanol industry, TCS writes. The largest ethanol tax credit is set to expire at the end of the year, and ethanol interests are looking for other ways for Congress to boost biofuels, the group says.
"The point that we’re conveying that is there are these policies that benefit biofuel production that on their face don’t seem to really be in the best interest of taxpayers," said Mike Surrusco, a senior investigator at TCS. Read More

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