Messmer supported the state mandated purchase of syngas through coal gasification technology. Developers of Leucadia National proposed a $2.6 billion syngas plant in Rockport, Indiana. Under the terms of the deal endorsed by Messmer, the state of Indiana would have bought syngas under a 30-year contract and then mandate that utilities within the state pass on any losses from the transaction on to Hoosier customers. Gas from the plant would make up about 17 percent of the state's supply. The deal received criticism due to government intrusion in the energy markets, and for forcing consumers to sign up for risky long-term gas purchases at prices substantially higher than market prices. Questions were also raised due to Leucadia National hiring Mark Lubbers to promote the deal. Lubbers is a former aide and close friend of former Governor Mitch Daniels. The project was ultimately panned by the state legislature in 2013.
- "Indiana advances leadership in clean coal technology". Governor's Office. March 2009. Retrieved 2012-02-015.
- Bradner, Eric (February 14, 2012). "Vectren: Shale-gas boom makes Rockport coal-to-gas deal risky". Indiana Economic Digest. Retrieved 2012-02-15.
- Bradner, Eric (February 15, 2012). "Indiana House committee hears testimony on planned Rockport coal-to-gas plant". Evansville Courier & Press. Retrieved 2012-02-15.
- Evanoff, Ted (January 2, 2011). "Daniels takes natural gas bet that others refused". Indianapolis Star. Retrieved 2012-02-15.
- Welsh, Gary (May 1, 2011). "Lubbers: Critics Of Coal Gasification Deal Are Sneaky And Evil". Advance Indiana. Retrieved 2012-02-15.
- Bradner, Eric (2013-04-27). "BRADNER: Rockport plant will never be". Retrieved 2013-04-29.
- State Representative Mark Messmer official Indiana State Legislature site
- Biography, voting record, and interest group ratings at Project Vote Smart
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