The 30% Federal Grant and 100% Bonus Depreciation that were enacted just a year ago are set to change at the end of this year. On January 1st, 2012, the grant will change to a tax credit and depreciation will change from 100% to 50% in year one. I believe these incentives need to be extended in their present form so the U.S. solar industry can continue to grow as it did last year – a 67% growth rate. The solar industry in the U.S. remains one of few bright spots in regards to economic growth and new jobs.
Every new energy related industry has needed government assistance to become self-sustaining. The solar industry is only a few years away from reaching this goal. With this in mind, please do not allow federal solar incentives to be cut during the current budget negotiations. On the contrary, please work to enhance and strengthen them.
Our country needs to wean itself from fossil fuels and move toward sources of clean renewable energy. If incentives for solar are cut now, we will not only continue our dependence on foreign oil, coal and nuclear but we will ensure that our country will be passed by countries like China, Japan, Germany and other countries worldwide that are making renewable energy a top priority. We have had decades of subsidized oil, coal, and nuclear -- and look at where it has left our country. This is why I ask you to please support the solar industry and the very important federal incentives that are helping solar reach grid parity. Many of our jobs depend on it.