Nebraska lawmakers advance rebates for natural gas fuel

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Nebraska drivers could receive refunds from the state on clean-burning fuel converters and pumps under a bill advanced by lawmakers.

Senators gave initial approval Tuesday to the incentives for companies and individuals that use vehicles which run on hydrogen fuel cells and liquefied petroleum.

Supporters compare clean-burning fuel alternatives to ethanol, which needed government support to jump-start its success. They say new infrastructure, production and fueling stations will likely follow the proposed $500,000 investment.

Opponents say a free market should regulate the expansion of natural gas for fuel, not the government.

The bill by Sen. Jeremy Nordquist of Omaha also includes rebates for purchasing or converting fuel pumps and cars to run on fuels with higher ethanol content.

The measure advanced on a 27-13 vote.

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