The U.S. House of Representatives missed an opportunity today to stand up for 60,000 American workers and preserve $50 billion in private infrastructure investment, according to a release from the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA).
The tax reform bill passed by the House retroactively changes how businesses can qualify for wind energy’s primary investment tools, the wind Production Tax Credit (PTC) and Investment Tax Credit (ITC), which are already on a path to phase out by 2019.
“The House tax bill, far from being pro-business, would kill over half of new wind farms planned in the U.S. and undermine one of the country’s fastest growing jobs,” said Tom Kiernan, CEO of AWEA. “The wind industry tax reformed ourselves with bipartisan agreement in 2015. The Senate tax proposal gets it right by respecting those terms.”
The House bill undermines wind development by implementing a retroactive change to qualification rules for wind energy tax credits. Because businesses can’t go back in time to requalify for the credits after ordering wind turbines and inking construction contracts, tens of thousands of jobs and billions of dollars of investment could be lost, and new business has stalled. The House bill would also terminate an inflation adjustment, significantly cutting the value of the PTC.
“Congress must act immediately in conference to drop the House provisions on the PTC and ITC, to restore the confidence of businesses ready to pour billions of dollars into job-creating American infrastructure,” added Kiernan.
The Senate tax proposal that passed the Finance committee last night does not retroactively alter the wind energy PTC or ITC, leaving in place the phase out terms set in the bi-partisan PATH Act of 2015, keeping American workers on the job.