As Legislators Debate Property Tax Exemption, State Chamber Says Wind Incentives Work

  • Joe Wertz
An Oklahoma wind turbine

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

An Oklahoma wind turbine

Oklahoma lawmakers have filed legislation reeling in tax credits and economic incentives for the wind industry, which have been described as overly generous and too costly.

One incentive in the crosshairs is a five-year exemption on local property taxes installed in 1985, which is reimbursed by the state to schools, counties and CareerTech centers, The Oklahoman‘s Paul Monies reports:

The state paid $64 million in reimbursements in 2013, with half of the exemptions claimed by wind farms. Total reimbursements rose 39 percent from $46 million in 2012, according to the Oklahoma Tax Commission.

On Monday, The State Chamber released a study supporting the exemption, which is available to large manufacturers, data centers and wind developers:

The study, by economic consulting firm RegionTrack Inc., said the incentive is especially beneficial to rural communities. For every dollar expended, the firm estimated $225 came in new economic output.