Maui News

Solar Tax Credit Cut Advances in House

February 7, 2013, 7:32 AM HST
* Updated February 7, 7:33 AM
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Solar panels. Photo by Wendy Osher.

Solar panels. Photo by Wendy Osher.

By Wendy Osher

A renewable energy tax credit reform bill that cuts the cap for solar installations, advanced in the state House.

The House Committee on Energy & Environmental Protection adopted HB497, as a way to address tax credits in an effort to maintain economic expansion and further promote renewable energy in a “fiscally equitable” way.

The tax credit for photovoltaic systems would be incrementally phased down from 30% of the actual cost to 15% over the next 5 years.  At that point, the Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism would provide a cost-benefit analysis of the incentive and help determine its future.

Also under the bill, the tax credit cap for solar hot water installations at a single family dwelling would increase to $2500 per household and $500 per unit for multi-family residential properties.  Small wind projects that are 1 Megawatt or less would be unaffected.

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Committee members say revisions keep the economy growing and continue to expand access to renewable energy in a “fiscally responsible” manner.

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The measure will now advance to the Committee on Commerce and Consumer Affairs.

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