Senators offer new tax credit

Car Charging StationA bipartisan bill offered yesterday in the Iowa Senate would create a new tax credit for those who construct infrastructure to support vehicles powered by alternative fuels.

Senate File 143, sponsored by state Sen. Matt McCoy (D-Des Moines) and Sen. Tim Kapucian (R-Keystone), would create a tax credit for anyone who constructs, installs, or places into service either an electric vehicle facility, or a natural gas vehicle facility. The tax credit of up to 30 percent of the total cost of purchasing or installing the facility may be claimed against agricultural, commercial, or residential taxes.

The bill would be retroactive to Jan. 1, 2015, and would sunset on Jan. 1, 2020. During that five-year period, it dedicates $5 million for tax credit certificates. Of that, $2 million each would be dedicated to electric and natural gas facilities, while the remaining $1 million could be applied to either on a first-come-first-served basis.

SF 143 states that to claim the credit, a certificate must be attached to a person’s tax return. Individuals who claim the credit may only apply one-third of the credit to each of three successive tax years.

“Any tax credit in excess of the taxpayer’s tax liability is refundable or may be used in calculating a future tax liability,” the bill’s explanatory statement reads.

Facilities for which credit is sought must be in service before Jan. 1, 2018. On July 1, 2017, any tax credits specified for electric or natural gas facilities not yet encumbered will roll into the funds available for either type of project.

Lobbyists for Alliant Energy Corporation, the Iowa Utility Association, the Iowa Environmental Council, General Motors, and Kwik Trip have all declared their support for SF 143. Waste Management Inc., the Iowa Grocery Industry Association, the Iowa Propane Gas Association, Annett Holdings, CRST International, Trans Iowa, and the Iowa Utilities Board have declared they are “undecided” on the proposed legislation.