Tax breaks for wind and solar?

State Rep. Bobby Cleveland introduced legislation halting tax incentives for renewable resources, such as wind and solar power.

House Bill 2908 repeals Senate Bill 440, which was signed into law in 2001. At the time, SB 440 allowed zero-emission energy facilities to collect tax credits beginning in Tax Year 2002.

“It’s time we do away with this costly tax credit,” said Cleveland, R-Slaughterville. “The government is not your sugar daddy, no matter how hard the wind industry may wish. Wind companies are no longer in their infancy, and the industry is stable enough to stand on its own feet.”

As the cost of electricity has increased, so has the cost of the tax credit to the state. Credit for electricity generated by zero-emission facilities cost Oklahoma $66,876,581 for Tax Year 2015.

“There has been plenty of talk about raising taxes on everyday Oklahomans recently, including efforts by major Oklahoma businesses to advance the cause. Before we tax our citizens to death, lawmakers must seriously consider scaling back tax credits available to billion-dollar industries,” said Cleveland. “Does big wind need those tax dollars more than our friends and neighbors? I don’t think so.”

Cleveland represents House District 20, which includes parts of Garvin, McClain, Cleveland and Pottawatomie counties.