It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas…

By Jeff Alan

Green and red are the Christmas colors. It’s just like Christmas for hundreds of Oregon businesses looking to cash in on “green energy” tax credits. Oregon’s Business Energy Tax Credit is designed to encourage companies to initiate “renewable” and “alternative” energy projects. Two days before the Oregon Legislative Session adjourned in June, legislators passed a bill to dramatically expand the Business Energy Tax Credit, doubling the cap for qualifying business projects to $20 million.

The sheer number of corporate requests for “green” project subsidies has overwhelmed Oregon’s Department of Energy. With applications expected to top 4,000 this year alone, Oregon stands to lose millions of dollars of tax revenue, causing “green energy” subsidies to result in red ink for the state’s general fund.

The problem with the Business Energy Tax Credit is that it puts the legislature in the position of picking winners and losers in the economy, subsidizing narrowly specific “green energy” projects that may not be either profitable or sustainable on their own merits. If business tax credits are so popular, then why not eliminate the corporate income tax entirely? That way, every business would retain more of its earnings to invest in truly marketable projects, which would be good for employees, shareholders, consumers and the environment.


Jeff Alan is Chief Investigator at Cascade Policy Institute, Oregon’s free market research center.

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Posted by at 03:00 | Posted in Measure 37 | 5 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Jerry

    These people in Salem are nuts. The free market will take care of things like this EVERY TIME. The same people who place these inane energy incentives in place for business are people who could not possibly run a business.
    They are completely out of touch with reality.
    I hope the program bankrupts the state.
    I hope every single business in Oregon applies and overwhelms the little desk jockeys in Salem.
    I hope the whole thing is an unmitigated disaster.
    I am certain it will be.
    You GO state government.
    You really GO!

  • Crawdude

    If they have money to waste like this, they have more than enough money to fund the Initiatives I’ll be voting Yes on this November.

  • Bob Clark

    Environmentalism has become a government supported racquet. When you have someone on a streetcorner harping on you to save the polar bear or sign up for green power, this someone is likely being paid by some “green” organization which in turn is getting subsidized by taxpayers through quasi and direct government entities like the Energy Trust of Oregon. Al Gore is the circus maestro who whips up extreme fear and guilt, and his minions in state and local government echo the worthiness of his snakeoil to the unsuspecting yuppie masses. Guilt, taxes, and govenment hand outs is the rule of the day in Oregon.

  • Jerry

    I say bring back the Yugo!

  • JesseO

    Oooh. I hate job creation!

    There are thousands of new jobs in Oregon because of these credits.

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