Solar Sales Tax Credit

Date: 2012



Unshackle Upstate, a non-partisan, pro-taxpayer, pro-economic growth, education and advocacy coalition made up of business and trade organizations from all parts of Upstate New York, supports this Article VII language.


This language proposes two measures to expand the income tax credit and sales and use tax exemptions for qualified solar energy systems equipment.


The first proposes to extend the state sales tax exemption on solar purchases to include commercial solar system owners. The current sales tax exemption only applies to residential solar purchases. 


The second extends the current personal income tax credit to homeowners that lease a solar system. The state's 25% tax credit currently applies only to homeowners who own the system. The Executive Budget proposes a tax credit equal to 12.5% of the annual leasing costs for those that lease such systems.  The credit can be carried forward five years in the event that it is larger than the applicant's annual tax liability.


New York State has a long history of supporting the development of renewable energy.  Solar power is clean, locally generated, renewable energy that can be a larger component of New York’s energy future.


Unshackle Upstate supports efforts to expand solar energy production, but it must be done in a manner that does not further increase the already high energy costs that the residential, commercial and industrial ratepayers of New York State must bear.


Because this proposal will achieve its goals without increasing the cost of energy, Unshackle Upstate supports the enactment of this Article VII language.