President Obama proposed to make the investment tax credit (ITC) permanent as part of his fiscal year 2016 budget request.
The President’s budget request calls for an increase to $7.4 billion from $6.9 billion for clean energy and $4 billion to encourage states to accelerate carbon reduction plans. The ITC is expected to decrease from 30 percent to 10 percent at the end of 2016. The budget request also calls for the permanent extension of the production tax credit, which is used for wind energy.
The ITC was first enacted in 2006. In the past four years, the solar industry employs 175,000 workers and brings $15 billion a year into the U.S. economy, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).
“In the past four years, employment in the solar industry has increased by more than 85 percent – and last year alone, we created one out of every 78 new jobs in America,” said SEIA President and CEO Rhone Resch. “This remarkable progress is due, in large part, to smart, effective public policies like the solar ITC.”
The U.S. Department of Energy requested $29.9 billion for fiscal year 2016, up $2.5 billion from the amount in FY 2015, according to Reuters. Of that amount, $10.7 billion would be spent to support scientific research, development and deployment of new clean energy technologies and advanced manufacturing, the article said.