House Passes Extension of Energy Efficient Homes Tax Credit – But Senate Action Blocked by Republican Filibuster

June 28th, 2010 - Posted by RESNET under Energy Efficiency, Legislation, RESNET News, RESNET Notes, RESNET Notes - June 2010

On May 28, 3010, the U.S. House of Representatives passed HR 4213 that included the extension of the $2,000 federal tax credit for energy efficient new homes.  Below is the language that was passed:

SEC. 206. NEW ENERGY EFFICIENT HOME CREDIT.

(a) IN GENERAL.—Subsection (g) of section 45L is amended by striking ‘‘December 31, 2009’’ and inserting “‘‘December 31, 2010’’.

(b) EFFECTIVE DATE.—The amendment made by this section shall apply to homes acquired after December 31, 2009.

The extension of the energy efficient homes credit was part of an omnibus tax extension and unemployment bill.  Although the Senate previously voted for the same extension language, the bill must go through a reconciliation process with the Senate, since the House version differed in total content.

Citing concerns of the costs of the unrelated portion of the bill, (extended unemployment coverage and Medicare provisions) the Republican Senate Leadership led a filibuster on the reconciliation bill.  There were not enough votes to stop the filibuster so the legislation was withdrawn.  The Democratic leadership is attempting to reduce the costs of the bill so that it can pick up the necessary 60 votes.

It should be noted that none of the debate is over the provisions of the federal tax credit for energy efficient homes.

The extender legislation includes a number of provisions that enjoy broad bipartisan support.  For this reason, the prospects for the eventual passage remain bright.  RESNET will keep its network informed on the developments regarding the extension of the credit.

Because of the current difficulty of moving legislation through Congress, it is critical that legislation is passed to extend the credit to 2014.  It will be a priority for RESNET to push for this extension when the new Congress convenes.

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