Fingers Crossed: Solar ITC Wrapped Into Upcoming Bailout Votes


Tonight, the U.S. Senate is poised to vote on revisions to the recently failed Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008. The new $700 billion bailout bill suspends the FDIC's borrowing cap from the Treasury and, in turn, includes an increase in the FDIC's insurance limits.

But the critical play for solar energy professionals is that the revised Senate bill will also include an eight-year extension of the solar investment tax credit (ITC).

The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has expressed confidence that the Senate will pass the legislation. After that, activity in the U.S. House of Representatives will take center stage.

Following the House's failure to pass the bill earlier this week – and the ensuing fallout in global trading markets – various industries, associations and economic watchdogs joined the Bush administration and congressional leaders in placing immense pressure on Congress to secure a compromise.

While it is uncertain whether the latest Senate bill does, in fact, reflect compromise that the House can support, many observers have suggested that the Senate's revisions – coupled with panic in the financial markets – have positioned the legislation for likely passageâ�¦and a sigh of relief for the burgeoning domestic solar market.

The SEIA is urging industry participants to contact their legislators and voice their unwavering support for the legislation. To locate your representative's Washington phone number, click HERE and type in your company's ZIP code. Or, reach your representative's offices through the Capitol switchboard at (202) 225-3121.

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