Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden, D-Ore., has called on congressional colleagues to revive the stalled EXPIRE Act, which would extend a slew of expired tax provisions, including the wind energy production tax credit (PTC).
In a statement released by his office, Wyden said renewing such credits is necessary to give certainty and relief to American workers and businesses.
‘It's unacceptable that inaction by Congress is denying American business the clarity and certainty they need to plan for tomorrow,’ said Wyden.
‘With renewable energy incentives like the wind production tax credit in question, hundreds of millions of dollars in job-creating investments are at risk, and the U.S. is falling further behind its economic competitors, like Germany and China, in transforming its energy markets,’ he said.
The EXPIRE Act covers more than 50 expired U.S. tax breaks, including the wind PTC. The legislation would retroactively extend the PTC through Dec. 31, 2015 – meaning that wind projects that start construction this year or by the end of 2015 would be eligible to take advantage of the $0.023/kWh incentive. In addition, the bill extends wind developers' option to choose a 30% investment tax credit in lieu of the PTC.
‘The Finance Committee came together this spring to produce the EXPIRE Act in a cooperative, bipartisan way. It wasn't easy, but it got done,’ he said, referring to the committee's action on the bill. However, when the committee passed the legislation to a vote of the full Senate in May, Senate Republicans blocked it.
‘Now is the time to revive the EXPIRE Act and renew these important tax provisions while we push ahead on comprehensive reform.’
Wyden is the second influential senator to spearhead the cause for wind energy. Earlier this month, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., vowed to take up the legislation by the end of the year.