Finance

House panel votes to extend tax credit for nuclear power

The House Ways and Means Committee on Thursday approved a bipartisan bill that would lift a deadline for the nuclear power production tax credit.

The panel passed the bill by voice vote.

The legislation would lift a requirement that nuclear facilities be placed in service by 2020 to be eligible for the credit. It would also allow public and nonprofit entities to transfer credits to other partners on the facilities, such as the projects' designers.

The bill, which was introduced by Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) and Tom Rice (R-S.C.), is of particular importance in South Carolina and Georgia, where new nuclear power plants are being constructed.

"We need to give these plants the certainty of the tax credits as Congress originally intended, not just for South Carolina and Georgia, but for the continued innovation of carbon-free nuclear energy and the security of our nation," Rice said.

Several lawmakers on both sides of the aisle said they want the committee to also pass legislation to extend tax credits for other types of renewable energy. Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) said his "hope is that we can address this in a positive way this year in comprehensive tax reform."

The Ways and Means Committee also passed a bipartisan bill aimed at helping recipients of Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) benefits get jobs. This bill passed also by voice vote.

Under the legislation, sponsored by Reps. Carlos Curbelo (R-Fla.) and Danny K. Davis (D-Ill.), up to $100 million from the TANF Contingency Fund would be used for grants to states for test projects about subsidizing wages for TANF recipients.

The Ways and Means Committee also approved versions of the nuclear credit and TANF bills during the last Congress, but they did not get votes in the full House.

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