Tax Credit Extensions Clear Congress

Publication December 18, 2015

The House of Representatives passed a year-end spending bill that extends solar and wind tax credits this morning by a 316 to 313 vote, after warnings yesterday by House minority leader Nancy Pelosi that she was not confident Democrats would vote in large enough numbers to pass the bill. 

 In the end, a major push by House leaders and the Obama administration, including by cabinet secretaries, was enough to pass the bill.

 The House passed a separate tax extenders bill yesterday by a vote of 318 to 109.  That bill extends tax credits for geothermal, biomass, landfill gas, incremental hydroelectric and ocean energy projects, but not for fuel cell, combined heat and power projects, small wind farms and micro-turbines.  It also extends a 50% depreciation bonus for investments in new equipment.

 Both measures are expected to clear the Senate easily this afternoon.

 President Obama has said he will sign it. 

 Washington airports are expected to be busy this evening as the president and members of Congress leave town for the holidays.

 Details about the extensions and tax credits can be found here.  [Link to paper on Tax Credits Teed Up for Extension]

 Kevin Brady, the House tax committee chairman, said yesterday that his committee will take a look next year at whether tax credits for fuel cells and combined heat and power equipment should be extended.  "The fuel cell and other breaks don't expire until next year, and tax writers will likely work on the issue some time in 2016," Brady said.

 by Keith Martin, in Washington

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