Senate Passes Legislation Tying Door and Window Tax Credits to ENERGY STAR® Program

March 12th, 2010 by Editor

The U.S. Senate passed a bill late on Wednesday that will tie the Internal Revenue Service’s tax credits for door, windows and skylights to the ENERGY STAR criteria. The legislation was passed as an amendment to the Senate’s “tax extenders” bill, which passed with a vote of 62-36. The bill will now go to the House of Representatives for further review.

The amendment would apply to any doors or windows “placed in service after the date of the enactment of this Act,” according to the legislation. It would take effect after final passage of the legislation (which includes passage by the house and the signature of President Obama).

The amendment to the Tax Extenders Act was sponsored by Sen. John Rockefeller (D – W.Va.), who last October had introduced a bill to the Senate with the same purpose. However, that bill had not moved forward since it was introduced. (CLICK HERE for related story.)  Sen. Chuck Grassley (R – Iowa) had co-sponsored that legislation.

The amendment was introduced to the Tax Extenders Bill on March 5. The prior .30/.30 provision had long been a source of controversy in the industry, and some groups have already spoken in favor of the Senate’s passage of this bill. (CLICK HERE for related story.)

The Window and Door Manufacturers Association is one of these.

“WDMA commends the Senate, and Sen. Rockefeller and Grassley in particular, for passing this important amendment, which will allow American manufacturers to create more jobs, and as a result, provide a much-needed economic boost for the entire housing industry and help to solidify the emerging, yet tenuous, recovery,” says WDMA chairman Steve Tourek, senior vice president of Marvin Windows and Doors. “This is welcome news for low- and middle-income consumers who will have not only more options for energy-efficient windows, but also, these consumers will be able to choose windows that are appropriate to their region of the country. Simply put, more energy-efficient products produced by more manufacturers available to more consumers is a win-win-win for the American economy.”

The current tax credit was originally passed as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and limited the tax credit to doors and windows “equal to or below a U-factor of 0.30 and [solar heat gain coefficient] of 0.30.”

CLICK HERE for full text of amendment.

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