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State Tax Credits News Briefs - May 2010

On April 1 Gov. Tim Pawlenty signed into law House File 2695, a bill comprised of tax incentives to stimulate job growth in Minnesota (See more on state tax credits in the Washington Wire, page 4). The bill establishes a state historic rehabilitation tax credit that mirrors the federal rehabilitation tax credit and will allow a state income tax credit equal to 20 percent of the cost of rehabilitating a qualifying historic property. The law also allows a developer to choose either a certificated, refundable credit or a grant, which supporters say will stimulate not-for-profit use of the incentive; the tax credit also can be used against the insurance premium tax, which widens the investor pool. For more information about state historic tax credits, please visit www.historictaxcredits.com and click on “State Historic Tax Credits” in the HTC menu.

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The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities reported that, due to the recession, states’ tax revenues from October 2009 through September 2009 were $87 billion less than collections from the previous 12 months. The 11 percent decline is the steepest on record. The report says that lost jobs, reduced wages and decreased economic activity have contributed to the decline.At the same time, the recession has resulted in an increased number of people seeking state services. In response to falling revenues and a new requirement that states balance budgets, nearly all states have cut spending and some have taken actions such as eliminating tax exemptions, broadening tax bases, and increasing rates and fees. According to the report, “State Tax Changes in Response to the Recession,” states are likely to continue enacting similar tax changes as the economy recovers.

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Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman in April signed a bill into law that promotes the production and exportation of wind energy from privately developed facilities. L.B. 1048 allows the Nebraska Power Review Board to approve renewable energy operations designed to export energy and exempts export projects from public power’s use of eminent domain. The law also replaces the five-year accelerated depreciation of personal property schedule, the state’s current method for taxing projects, with a nameplate capacity tax that will not be subject to general fund use in times of economic hardship. Nebraska ranks fourth for potential wind energy development and 24th for wind production, according to the American Wind Energy Association.

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In the second round of funding for Massachusetts’ Commonwealth Solar Stimulus Rebate program, 56 commercial solar energy projects received a total of $4 million that will contribute to the installation of 4 megawatts of solar power, according to a statement from the governor’s office. All grants were awarded on April 9, the same day the program opened, to projects generating from 5 to 200 kilowatts each. The round was fully subscribed in less than an hour. Part of the state’s recovery plan, which emphasizes investment in renewable energy, the funds originated from $8 million in state energy program funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act).

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At a Baltimore County manufacturing facility, Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley met with company executives to discuss the benefits of legislation passed in March to help put unemployed workers back to work. O’Malley proposed the legislation as part of his economic recovery agenda. Effective March 25 through December 31, 2010, the Job Creation and Recovery Tax Credit offers as much as $250,000 to employers who hire unemployed Marylanders, according to a release from the governor’s office. The tax credit has a $20 million program cap and is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Employers may apply online at www.dllr.maryland.gov.

Journal Category:

State Tax Credits

Authors:

Novogradac

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