Senator Tkaczyk Marks Earth Day with Solar Energy Legislation

Cecilia Tkaczyk

April 22, 2013

State Senator Cecilia Tkaczyk marked Earth Day by co-sponsoring several pieces of legislation to expand the use of solar energy and promote the solar industry in New York.

“Solar power is renewable, clean, and far safer for our environment than fossil fuels,” Senator Tkaczyk said. “And promoting the solar industry in New York would create new jobs and help revitalize the Upstate economy.”

Senator Tkaczyk referenced a report from The Prometheus Institute, a data source on solar energy initiatives, which estimates that solar energy will create 22,000 American jobs in manufacturing, distribution and various building trades over the next decade.

“The solar industry is creating jobs in manufacturing, installation, research and design, and policy development. I want to make sure New York gets its share of those jobs,” Senator Tkaczyk said.

Senator Tkaczyk also applauded Governor Cuomo’s recent announcement that $46 million has been awarded under his NY-Sun initiative for large-scale solar energy projects that will add 52 megawatts to the state’s solar capacity.

“The Governor’s NY-Sun initiative has led to unprecedented growth in the industry and millions of dollars in private investment,” Senator Tkaczyk said.

Senator Tkaczyk said the Hudson Valley in particular has become a focal point for solar production, innovation and use. Local solar companies are thriving, and schools in the region are responding by offering new classes in solar technology.

Senator Tkaczyk is co-sponsoring legislation that would promote the production and use of solar by creating incentives for consumers and local businesses:

S.4708 -- Provides a personal income tax credit for residents who install solar electric, solar thermal and/or wind energy systems in their homes.

S.4710 -- Establishes a tax credit for businesses that install solar and other alternative energy systems and generating equipment.

S2635 -- Provides an exemption from the State’s sales tax for solar and other alternative energy systems

“Earth Day represents the birth of the modern day Environmental Movement,” Senator Tkaczyk said.  “It raised awareness of the fragile nature of our water, air and soil, and sparked the creation of new environmentally-safe technologies. Now we have to support and promote those technologies, to help ensure a cleaner, safer planet for our children.”