Counties Raise Concerns with Solar Tax Exemption Mandate

MACo Associate Director Kevin Kinnally testified in support HB 1106 (CF SB 954) – Property Tax – Solar Energy Systems with amendments. The bill grants broad tax exemptions for rooftop community solar energy generating systems, designates certain solar energy property as a new subclass of personal property, and authorizes local governments to impose a lower personal property tax rate on solar energy equipment.

From the MACo Testimony:

MACo appreciates the flexibility to impose a lower personal property tax rate on solar energy equipment, as many counties are interested in promoting community solar on rooftops, brownfields, or less desirable lands as alternatives to large-scale energy generation facilities. However, local personal property tax revenues would decrease by $2.7 million due to the tax exemption for community solar energy generating systems and other assessment changes, according to the bill’s fiscal note. Further, the fiscal note indicates that as solar energy generating systems become more viable, the potential decrease in local property tax revenues from the personal property exemption will be substantially higher than currently estimated.

MACo urges amendments to authorize rather than mandate a personal property tax exemption for specified solar property, and to strike the language that prohibits SDAT from considering the income attributable to a community solar energy generating system when determining a personal property assessment

Follow MACo’s advocacy efforts during the 2020 legislative session on MACo’s Legislative Tracking Database.