Industry poised to create 67,000 Jobs in 2009, another 119,000 jobs in 2010
Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) President & CEO Rhone Resch today issued the following statement on Senate passage of its version of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act with a vote of 61-37:
“We applaud Senate leaders for crafting and passing a bill to quickly stimulate our failing economy. President Obama has issued bold challenges to America: create jobs immediately and double renewable energy production in three years.
“Building upon the recent 8-year extension of solar tax credits, the economic stimulus package includes key solar priorities that give us the tools to meet both challenges. The solar industry is ready to put America back to work now and rebuild our energy infrastructure. We have warehouses filled with equipment ready to be installed. We are poised to get tens of thousands of workers installing solar panels and constructing solar power plants today.
“We call upon House and Senate conferees to include the following critical solar provisions:
Renewable Energy Grant Program: Offer DOE grants equal to 30 percent of the cost of solar property placed in service during 2009 and 2010, an alternative to tax credits that are not functioning as Congress intended. Also allow the grant program to support critical utility-scale projects (more than 25 MW electric and more than 10 MW thermal) in 2011 and 2012.
Federal Long-Term Power Purchase Agreements: Allow the federal government to enter in to 30-year PPA’s to secure long-term, competitive rates for solar on federal buildings and land. (Current limit is 10 years.)
Subsidized Energy Financing: Repeal a penalty for subsidized financing for solar projects, allowing for businesses and individuals to qualify for the full amount of the solar tax credit.
Loan Guarantee Program: Create a new loan guarantee program to support financing of renewable energy systems. Allow ‘new or significantly improved’ renewable energy equipment, allowing advanced solar technology to qualify.
Manufacturing Investment Credit: Create a 30-percent investment tax credit for facilities engaged in the manufacture of renewable energy property or equipment. “