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Solar tax credit bill burns out in House committee

By: - April 26, 2022 4:37 pm
Solar tax credit bill burns out in House committee

A bill proposing a tax credit for the purchase and installation of solar energy systems in Louisiana failed to advance Tuesday from the House Ways and Means Committee. (Wes Muller/La. Illuminator)

A bill proposing a tax credit for the purchase and installation of solar energy systems in Louisiana failed to advance Tuesday from the House Ways and Means Committee.

Republican legislators voted against the measure, 7-3. 

House Bill 794, sponsored by Rep. Edmond Jordan, D-Baton Rouge, would have offered a 50% rebate up to $25,000 for new or existing solar systems at any residential or commercial property. The program would end after three years and cost the state $15 million. 

The bill would essentially resurrect a similar tax credit that expired a few years ago but with a key difference. Rebates would be issued on a first-come, first-serve basis with a cap of $5 million per year. The solar tax credit that ended in 2017 had no cap, which led to some budgeting volatility and became expensive, costing the state about $261 million, according to the legislative fiscal office.

The proposed program would have cost $5 million per year plus staffing expenses at the Department of Revenue that could have exceeded $100,000, according to the bill’s fiscal note.

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Wesley Muller
Wesley Muller

Wes Muller traces his journalism roots back to 1997 when, at age 13, he built and launched a hyper-local news website for his New Orleans neighborhood. In the years since then, he has freelanced for the Times-Picayune in New Orleans and worked on staff at the Sun Herald in Biloxi, WAFB-9News CBS in Baton Rouge, and the Enterprise-Journal in McComb, Mississippi. He also taught English as an adjunct instructor at Baton Rouge Community College. Much of his journalism has involved reporting on First Amendment issues and coverage of municipal and state government. He has received recognitions including McClatchy's National President's Award, the Associated Press Freedom of Information Award, and the Daniel M. Phillips Freedom of Information Award from the Mississippi Press Association, among others. Muller is a New Orleans native, a Jesuit High School alumnus, a University of New Orleans alumnus and a veteran U.S. Army paratrooper. He lives in Ponchatoula, Louisiana, with his two sons and his wife, who is also a journalist.

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