Virginia governor signs renewable energy legislation

Gov. Bob McDonnell, R-Va., just signed a number of renewable energy bills into law. Among the measures was legislation to provide a $500 tax credit for each green job created in the commonwealth; a measure establishing the Universities Clean Energy Development and Economic Stimulus Foundation; the creation of the Virginia Offshore Wind Development Authority; and legislation rewarding investor-owned electric utilities for using wind energy.
S.B.623/H.B.803 allows a $500 tax credit for the creation of green jobs for taxable years beginning on and after Jan. 1, 2010. Each taxpayer is also allowed a credit for up to 350 new green jobs and may qualify for the Enterprise Zone Grant program if the job is located in an enterprise zone.
H.B.928 creates the Virginia Universities Clean Energy Development and Economic Stimulus Foundation as a corporate and a political subdivision of the commonwealth. The foundation shall identify, obtain, disburse and administer funding for research and development of alternative fuels, clean energy production and related technologies; support economic development projects in disadvantaged rural areas; and assist with the commercialization of alternative fuels and clean energy technologies.
S.B.577/H.B.389 creates the Virginia Offshore Wind Development Authority to facilitate and support the development of the offshore wind industry and wind-powered electric energy facilities located off the coast of the Virginia beyond the commonwealth’s three-mile jurisdictional limit.
The authority will identify existing state and regulatory or administrative barriers to the development of the offshore wind industry; collect environmental data; upgrade port facilities to accommodate the manufacturing and assembly of project components and vessels that will support such projects; and apply to the U.S. Department of Energy for loan guarantees for such projects.
H.B.1022 provides that an investor-owned electric utility will receive triple credit toward meeting the goals of the state’s renewable portfolio standard for energy derived from offshore wind.
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