MA Legislators seek to stop Charlie Baker from passing Transportation Climate Initiative

Opponents of the hotly debated Transportation Climate Initiative are pushing a bill this week that would force Gov. Charlie Baker to seek approval from the Legislature before enacting the multi-state compact that will hike the cost of gas.

“The bottom line is we’re filing something that will at least require the Legislature to approve and maybe direct it if it’s passed,” state Rep. David DeCoste, a Norwell Republican, told the Herald. “It’s essentially a tax and you could have potentially never-ending tax increases as a result of this and nobody would ever vote on it.”

Baker has been keen on the TCI deal — a collaboration between 12 states from New England to the Mid-Atlantic, as well as the District of Columbia — as a method of reducing carbon emissions and moving toward renewable energy for transportation.

The compact would charge fuel companies for the carbon emissions associated with the gas and diesel they sell. Half of the money raised through the fees would go toward Baker’s $18 billion transportation bond bill, which includes major investments in the beleaguered MBTA.