Family Businesses for Affordable Energy (FBAE) today called for the extension of the New Mexico Renewable Energy Production Tax Credit (REPTC), an extension that will lead to more new jobs and investments, while helping to lower the cost of energy for families and businesses.

With this simple incentive, New Mexico already created thousands of jobs with billions in new investments.  According to a recent study commissioned by the NM Energy, Minerals & Natural Resources Department, the tax credit created over 9,000 jobs, $430 million of labor income, and reductions in electricity costs—numbers that significantly exceed the fiscal cost of the tax credit.

Conservative estimates are that there is $1.5-$2 billion worth of investments on the current solar waiting list alone. This could translate into 7,000-9,000 new jobs for New Mexico just waiting for the tax credit extension.

“New Mexico should continue to invest in its energy infrastructure,” said Alex Ayers, Executive Director of FBAE.  “Taxpayers will get a huge return on new jobs, new companies, and projects that are already in the pipeline, just waiting to get started if this credit is continued.  We cannot allow these potential jobs to just be thrown away or to leave New Mexico for other states with tax credits.”

“These tax credits are good for family businesses, good for taxpayers and good for the New Mexico economy,” he said.

In 2002, New Mexico expanded its renewable energy sector, bringing jobs, investments and sustainable energy into the state. To help spur private investments, the legislature implemented the REPTC—a tax credit available to energy companies who generate electricity from renewables, such as solar arrays and wind turbines.

This incentive program is set to expire January 1, 2018. A bipartisan bill (HB440 and SB432) changes and temporarily extends the program. The goal: to support continued investments in New Mexico while also adjusting the tax credit itself to better reflect the decreased costs of building renewable energy facilities.

In addition, the bill provides a more appropriate end date for the program, phasing out the production tax credit by 2023—as opposed to ripping the rug out from under companies already invested as well as the ones on the waiting list.