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State Tax Credits News Briefs - December 2010

The Oregon Department of Energy is no longer accepting business energy tax credit applications for renewable energy projects with projected costs of less than $500,000 (Tier One projects) because it has received application requests in excess of the $10 million allocated for smaller projects. Due to mandatory processing times, the agency will not create a waiting list. ODOE said it expects additional funding for Tier One projects to become available in January 2011. In December, the agency expects to post application requirements and details about the funding cycles to its web site at www.oregon.gov.

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The Michigan Economic Growth Authority (MEGA) board approved billions of dollars in tax incentives for 16 companies and one brownfield redevelopment project. The largest investments went to Ford, General Motors and Chrysler to ensure the auto industry's future in the state. Among the awards are a $1.3 billion state tax credit to Chrysler Group LLC, a $909 million state tax credit to Ford Motor Company and a $3.2 million state tax credit to Dematic Corp. In response to interstate competition for company expansions and relocations, MEGA provides these refundable tax credits against the Michigan Business Tax to companies expanding or relocating their operations in Michigan. Combined, the projects are expected to create 6,182 jobs, retain 216,420 jobs and generate $2.1 billion in new investment in the state. A complete list of tax credit recipients is available online at www.michigan.gov.

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Georgia-Pacific selected its Port Hudson, La. mill as one of two locations for the company's $500 million investment advanced tissue-papermaking technology. The mill will receive $300 million to upgrade one of its paper machines and to install associated converting equipment. Louisiana Economic Development (LED) says the investment will result in the retention of approximately 1,000 jobs and create as many as 400 construction-related jobs. To secure the project, LED developed an incentive package that included a $300 million Gulf Opportunity Zone bond allocation, which enables the company to issue tax-exempt debt to finance the project, and a $3 million Retention and Modernization refundable state tax credit.

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Gov. Jim Doyle announced nearly $3 million in funding for three southern Wisconsin companies to invest in their operations and create 36 jobs. The funds come from the state's economic development tax credit program and the State Energy Program (SEP) through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Standard Process Inc., a nutritional supplement manufacturer, will receive $250,000 in economic development tax credits to construct and equip an 11,000-square-foot addition to its main plant. United Ethanol LLC generates 50 million gallons of ethanol a year and will receive more than $2.2 million in SEP funds to install an anaerobic digester that will reduce the plant's natural gas usage by as much as 25 percent. Idle Free Systems Inc., which sells battery-powered, idle-elimination systems for trucks to lower fuel costs and emissions, is receiving $450,000 in SEP funds to expand production capabilities. The governor's office says the three projects represent a total investment of more than $19 million.

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The Connecticut Clean Energy Fund (CCEF) launched the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act Commercial Solar Photovoltaic (PV) program, which offers a total of $3 million in grants to reduce new solar PV equipment installation costs for Connecticut's commercial, industrial and institutional facilities. The program is an attempt to enable solar PV system owners' costs to break even over the life of the equipment, with a fair return on investment compared to purchasing an equivalent amount of electricity from a utility company. Eligible applicants include real estate developers; owners of commercial, industrial or institutional sites; and other companies engaged in solar PV project development. Proposed projects must be in the development stage and have a 50 kilowatt minimum capacity. Application instructions and more details are available at www.ctcleanenergy.com.

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State Tax Credits

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