Massachusetts Climate Bill Includes Tax Certainty For Solar Projects

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The Massachusetts Legislature passed, “An Act Creating A Roadmap for the Next Generation of Climate Policy,” which contains numerous policy proposals related to clean energy, including measures that clarify tax treatment for solar projects. This development comes after the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) negotiated a compromise with state tax assessors.

Following is a statement from David Gahl, senior director of state affairs at SEIA on the new climate bill:

“This legislation is a roadmap that will ultimately help the Commonwealth of Massachusetts decarbonize its economy. There are several positive developments for the solar industry, including measures that encourage the SMART program to serve more low-to-moderate income customers and exempt certain businesses from the Commonwealth’s solar net metering caps.

“After months of negotiations, the bill now includes a provision that clarifies how taxes are assessed by towns and municipalities on wind, solar and energy storage systems. In short, homeowners and small businesses will not see their property taxes increase when they install small solar systems. Larger solar systems will be exempt from taxes if they already have an agreement in place for other tax payments.

“This is a reasonable framework and one that should provide clarity to the tax law and increased certainty for both large and small solar firms. We commend the legislature for including this compromise in the final version of the roadmap and we urge Governor Baker to sign this bill into law.”

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