Standardized Tax Assessment Model Will Create 16,000 Jobs and Add Billions in Revenue for New York State
March 24, 2021
ACE NY, NYSEIA
Joint Report from Alliance for Clean Energy and New York Solar Energy Industries Association Finds Standardized Renewable Energy Tax Assessment Model would Increase New York State Jobs by 32%
Proposed as Part X of the New York State Budget, Tax Standardization Framework Will Generate $5 Billion in Gross State Product and $2 Billion in Labor Income.
FULL REPORT: https://www.nyseia.org/policydocuments/SEA-property-tax-impacts-report
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: https://www.nyseia.org/policydocuments/executive-summary-property-tax-impacts-report
Albany, NY—The Alliance for Clean Energy New York (ACE NY) and the New York Solar Energy Industries Association (NYSEIA) released a new economic impact report that finds that implementing a standardized renewable energy tax assessment model will create tens of thousands of jobs and generate billions in revenue for New York State. The report, Standardizing Renewable Energy Property Tax Approaches in NY State: Economic Benefits to Host Communities, forecasts the effects of Part X in the proposed state budget, which would provide a framework for local communities to negotiate tax agreements with energy developers.
The tax standardization policy would generate economic activity that would result in 16,000 new jobs across the state, particularly in upstate regions, representing a 32% increase without tax standardization.
If Part X is passed, New York’s labor income would increase $2 billion, from $6.2 billion to $8.2 billion. The gross state product would increase $5.2 billion, from $16.3 billion to $21.5 billion. The report also finds that with a standardized tax assessment model, New York would experience $38.2 billion in business sales compared to the $29 billion generated without the framework.
The report shows that upstate regions, particularly Western New York, North Country and the Mid-Hudson Region, will realize the most significant economic benefits from a standardized tax assessment model, as these regions have the highest solar and wind capacity.
"The existing lack of standardization regarding property tax-related appraisal and assessment is a long-standing, significant risk and bottleneck to the development and deployment of community solar projects in New York State. SEA's study shows that standardization would be a win-win-win solution for New York's clean energy industry, its taxing jurisdictions and its climate goals, resulting in accelerated deployment of renewables in line with our CLCPA mandates, while also generating hundreds of millions of dollars in economic benefits to local municipalities and thousands of additional jobs. Furthermore, standardization would also provide parity to renewable energy on property tax treatment with the oil and gas industry in New York," said Shyam Mehta, Executive Director of New York Solar Energy Industries Association (NYSEIA).
“If we are to meet our climate goals, we must move all-in with renewable energy. Unfortunately, the lack of a state assessment model has held up multiple projects and threatens to put us further and further behind. As this report shows, standardizing the approach for assessing renewable energy will have considerable economic benefits for both the state and local communities while also kicking our move to renewable energy into high gear,” said Conor Bambrick, Director of Climate Policy for Environmental Advocates NY.
"This report confirms that our future lies with renewable energy. A standardized tax assessment model for solar, wind, and other forms of renewable energy will ensure that we are able to realize our clean energy future, creating family-sustaining green jobs and boosting the economy while combating climate change. As our state recovers from both a public health and an economic crisis, we need to make sure we adopt policies to support development of clean energy while supporting our communities," said Julie Tighe, President of the New York League of Conservation Voters.
“The property taxes paid by wind and solar projects will boost local governments at a time when they need it—and for the next 20 years. But if the state publishes a standardized method for assessing these taxes, the process can be more smooth and consistent, helping to increase tax revenues even more by virtue of more projects reaching construction. With this new framework in place, New York’s labor income would increase $2 billion and the gross state product would grow $5.2 billion,” said Anne Reynolds, ACE NY Executive Director.
"If we are to achieve the state's mandated climate goal of 70% renewable electricity by 2030, we need to ensure that wind and solar projects are being built and operational in the next 9 years. According to this recent report, tax standardization will increase the certainty of project completion and will provide hundreds of millions of dollars more to localities across the state compared to the net present value of PILOT payments," said Michaela Ciovacco, Program Coordinator at New Yorkers for Clean Power.
“We know that we must quickly scale up renewables to meet the ambitious clean energy and carbon reduction goals of the CLCPA. This bill will provide a framework for communities to negotiate tax agreements with renewable energy developers, ensuring that these projects can move forward and provide thousands of well-paying, family-supporting jobs for upstate communities,” said Cullen Howe, Senior Attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council.
"New York has some of the most ambitious clean energy goals in the country and has made it a priority to improve the process for getting renewable energy projects sited and built. This report shows that accelerating renewable energy development is not just good for the environment, but is also good for jobs and the economy,” said Ryan Katofsky, Managing Director of Advanced Energy Economy.
“This report demonstrates that if we overcome barriers to project development, it can unlock not only jobs and clean power, but also local municipal tax revenue. The American Clean Power Association urges New York to standardize its taxation of wind and solar projects to achieve all of these benefits,” said Andrew Gohn, Eastern Region Director, State Affairs at American Clean Power Association.
"Standardizing the application of the property tax exemption and PILOT rules for community solar projects is a win for all parties, helping to reduce both time and costs for building community solar in New York. This will ultimately lead to lower costs for subscribers and more economic benefits for the state,” said Kaitlin Kelly O’Neill, Northeast Regional Director, Coalition for Community Solar Access.
"Standardizing and providing a framework for local communities to negotiate tax agreements with renewable energy developers removes another barrier to meeting New York's aggressive clean energy targets and can speed up the process by several months. Adopting this policy allows us to accelerate renewable energy deployment while creating significantly more green energy jobs and economic benefits," said Gordian Raacke, Executive Director of Renewable Energy Long Island, a not-for-profit organization.
“Friends of Columbia Solar is working hard to support the Copake solar project, and standardized taxation will simplify the approval process and make our task easier,” said Dan Haas, Coordinator, Friends of Columbia Solar.
“The Sierra Club strongly supports a standardized renewable energy tax assessment in New York. This model will offer a guide to local communities to ensure they are developing generous yet fair tax rates with renewable energy developers. These new energy projects will create thousands of family-supporting jobs across the State and benefit communities with steady revenue streams,” said Robert Ciesielski, Energy Chair for the Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter.
Footnote: Per Slide 20 of the Executive Summary, tax standardization could result in $21.5 billion in gross state product (GSP), compared to $16.3 billion under the status quo base scenario. That is an increase of $5.2 billion in GSP. (Gross state product represents the value of all final goods and services that NY’s renewable energy economy produces.)
About the Alliance for Clean Energy New York: The Alliance for Clean Energy New York (ACE NY) is a broad coalition dedicated to promoting clean energy, energy efficiency, a healthy environment, and a strong economy for the Empire State, and is New York’s premier advocate for the rapid adoption of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies. www.aceny.org
About the New York Solar Energy Industries Association: Founded in 1994, New York Solar Energy Industries Association (NYSEIA) is the only statewide membership and trade association dedicated solely to advancing solar energy use in New York State. NYSEIA proudly represents hundreds of businesses across New York that employ thousands of workers throughout the solar value chain. Led by its active board of directors, NYSEIA strives to achieve significant, long- term, and sustainable growth of solar energy for New York State.