Extending Solar Tax Credits Tentatively Linked to Covid Aid Deal

U.S. congressional leaders have tentatively agreed to a package of tax incentives including extension of credits for wind and solar projects that would be incorporated into a must pass-government funding bill if a deal on Covid stimulus can be reached, according to a person familiar with the negotiations who asked not to be identified.

The package renewing tax breaks, which could also provide tax cuts for beer-brewers and the storage of carbon dioxide, has been the subject of bipartisan talks that have yielded agreement on the House and Senate tax writing committees, according to a congressional aide, who also asked not to be identified.

An extenders deal hinges on leaders in the House, Senate, and White House agreeing on a broad spectrum of largely unrelated issues and a breakthrough on an economic relief bill, which has eluded lawmakers for months. An agreement to extend these tax breaks for multiple years last year fell apart after he White House balked at some of the clean energy incentives and Congress instead passed a narrow one-year extension of some non-controversial tax breaks.

U.S. Solar-Power Installations Poised for Record Year: Chart

There is support for the inclusion of a one-year extension of lucrative tax credits for the wind and solar industries at their current level as well as the multiyear extension and expansion of a tax credit for the underground storage of carbon dioxide backed by both environmental groups and oil companies. Also being pushed are credits for energy storage and offshore wind.

In all, more than 30 tax breaks for energy-efficient equipment, movie producers and race-car tracks and other targeted industries expire at the end of the year. Also among the expiring tax breaks is a special write-off for race horses, a favorite provision of the senior senator from Kentucky: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who will have large say over whether extenders end up in a final version of the legislation.

Several solar stocks including SunPower Corp. and Sunrun Inc. were up sharply Tuesday, though it was unclear whether the bill was a catalyst.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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