The Senate Energy and Public Utilities Committee heard Senator Chris Widener, FAIA explain SB 232 which would exempt from taxation renewable energy facilities that are not financed through the Ohio Air Quality Development Authority and require a payment in lieu of taxes on the basis of each megawatt of production capacity in such facilities.
Sen. Widener said his bill would spur the production of renewable energy, such as wind and solar, in Ohio through a tax exemption if the project is not financed through the Ohio Air Quality Development Authority, and require payment in lieu of taxes on the basis of each megawatt of production capacity of the facility.
He said he wants to keep the issue simple, transparent and reliable. Widener said the tax changes need to be done quickly and added that SB232 is quite different from the governor’s approach, announced in his 2010 State of the State address.
The bill would allow companies that are seeking to build renewable energy generation facilities in Ohio to pay an annual fee based on how much they generate, in lieu of tangible personal property taxes (TPPT), bringing tax rates for these kinds of projects in line with surrounding states. Companies could apply to the Ohio Air Quality Development Authority for an exemption from the state TPPT and instead pay a flat, annual fee of $6,000 per megawatt of installed capacity for the life of the facility.
To be eligible for this arrangement, the company must be under construction by 2011 and operational by 2012, and must commit to create jobs in Ohio.