State Chamber of Commerce – Contractors Voice Support For Trump’s Executive Order On Keystone XL Pipeline
Two more business groups expressed their support and excitement for President Trump's announcement on Tuesday that the Keystone XL Pipeline was being resurrected.
The Montana Chamber of Commerce and the Montana Contractors Association said the effect of the pipeline on Montana would be profound, not just because of the jobs, but also the positive long-term income for the state.
Chamber President Webb Brown was encouraged by the move as a path forward for the multi-billion dollar pipeline.
“This is a major, major project for Montana,” Brown said. “The construction of the pipeline in Montana could potentially mean thousands of jobs. That’s short-term, I know, but one of the key aspects of the pipeline is the on-ramp for oil to go into the pipeline by Baker over in the eastern part of the state. That’s the only part on the way of the pipeline where oil can be uploaded, and that by itself will be a big boost to Montana. In addition, all the little electric co-ops along the way are going to provide power to the pumping stations, and that’s going to be beneficial to all those small communities.”
Montana Contractors Association President Carey Hegreberg said the pipeline was never allowed to be properly confirmed by the U.S. government.
“It’s been in the works now for a long, long time,” Hegreberg said. “It was unfairly delayed by the last administration. It’s our best trading partner in the world, Canada, and it will allow the United States to increase our energy security and import less oil from unfriendly countries. It’s a win-win-win deal.”
Hegreberg said the tax benefits to Montana would be profound.
“There’s no question that this would have long-term impacts to the economy, especially with the taxes paid by the company,” he said. “It would go to local and state governments and hat is made available for construction in many cases.”
Brown said the tax impacts would be felt for decades.
“This new project could be one of the largest property tax payers in the state, much less the income tax collection and all the other things that can be attributed to that. I hope we can get this thing restarted and completed in short order.”
One of the conditions proposed by President Trump is that the steel for the actual pipeline would be manufactured in the U.S.