Less than a week after the Nebraska legislature passed L.B.104, Gov. Dave Heineman, D-Neb., told reporters he is undecided whether to sign or veto the tax exemption bill.
L.B.104 provides sales tax exemptions for the purchase of wind turbines, towers and other wind farm components. Supporters contend Nebraska lags far behind other states, such as Iowa, Kansas and Oklahoma, in developing wind energy and that without L.B.104, the state will continue to fall behind.
However, much of the debate over the bill's effectiveness in bringing more wind energy, centers around Lenexa, Kan.-based developer TradeWind Energy, which is planning a $300 million to $400 million wind farm in Dixon County, located near the Iowa and South Dakota border.
‘I object to this special tax break for a Kansas company when the legislature didn't provide new, significant tax relief or tax reform for Nebraskans,’ Heineman told reporters.
The wind farm would create up to 300 construction jobs with 20-to-25 permanent jobs. The project is expected to yield $10,000 to $15,000 per tower to farmers in leases and between $700,000 and $800,000 in taxes for Dixon County.