On July 17, 2019, the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued final regulations (T.D. 9872) providing guidance on the rules under Internal Revenue Code (IRC) section 50(d)(5) that require an income inclusion by the lessee in the so-called “pass-through lease” structure used with investment tax credit property. The final regulations adopt, without change, the proposed
According to a related presale report (and as had been announced in an earlier request for proposal), the Connecticut Green Bank (Green Bank) is monetizing certain solar renewable energy credits (SHRECs) generated under its Solar Home Renewable Energy Program and sold to Connecticut Light and Power (d/b/a Eversource Energy) and United Illuminating (UI).
I am pleased to announce that I will be speaking in an upcoming Strafford live webinar, “Tax Reform and Renewable Energy: Planning Techniques, 100% Expensing, BEAT, Tax Credits and Interest Deduction Limitations” scheduled for Wednesday, January 16, 1:00 pm-2:30 pm Eastern.
As a reader of this blog, you are eligible to attend this…
Below are soundbites from panel discussions at Solar Power International on September 25 and 26 in Anaheim, California. Overall the conference was well-attended and the panelists and audience seemed optimistic regarding current and future opportunities.
The soundbites are organized by topic, rather than presented chronologically. The soundbites were prepared without the benefit of a recording or a transcript and have been edited for clarity.
Topics covered include tax equity, the solar start of construction rules, the investment tax credit (“ITC”) and tax basis risk after the Federal Circuit’s opinion in Alta Wind, the inverted lease structure, back-leverage debt, storage, community solar and merchant projects.
Macroeconomic Factors for Solar and Tax Equity
“Rising corporate profits have caused more tax equity to enter the market. That has shifted the negotiating leverage to the sponsors.” Managing Director, Money Center Bank
“Tax equity always needs to fund around 40 percent of the capital stack in order to use the tax benefits efficiently.” Managing Director, Money Center Bank “Equipment costs continue to come down. Module prices are back to where they were before the tariffs at 30 to 40 cents a Watt.” President, Diversified Solar Services Company
“There are greater economies of scale for utility scale solar than for residential or C&I. As module prices drop faster than that customer acquisition costs, utility scale will become a larger portion of the market.” President, Diversified Solar Services Company
“I am very bullish on next year. This has been the best year ever from a volume perspective, not from an income perspective, because the market is causing us to charge less.” Managing Director, Regional Bank
“Falling electricity prices aren’t leading to sponsors raising less capital, because sponsors have been beating down lenders and service providers.” Managing Director, Regional Bank
“Capital providers are taking more risk for less return.” Managing Director, Regional Bank
“Residential solar debt has become an accepted asset class.” Managing Director, Regional Bank
“Soft costs, such as marketing, legal, accounting and tax advice, are five to seven percent of a solar project’s cost in Europe and Asia; they are 35 percent of solar project’s cost here; we need to attack that.” President, Solar Developer…
In September, the State of Hawaii Department of Taxation issued a letter ruling (Hawaii Letter Ruling No. 2018-01) that clarified the “placed in service” requirement in the application of the Renewable Energy Technologies Income Tax Credit (“RETITC”) in Hawaii. A project was denied RETITC in the year when testing was conducted because the project had…
Below are answers to questions we received during our tax equity webinar of October 23. These questions were submitted online during the webinar. The presentation from the webinar is available here.
Question: Commercial and industrial (C&I) has higher returns but how many projects raise tax equity versus other segments of the solar market? What…
David Feldman and Paul Schwabe of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have published their annual solar PV financing report: Terms, Trends, and Insights on PV Project Finance in the United States, 2018. I am pleased to have been invited to comment on a draft of the report and find the final version to…
We were pleased to participate in Power Finance & Risk’s (PFR) Tax Equity Roundtable. We were joined in the roundtable discussion by Rich Dovere of C2 Energy Capital, Marshal Salant of Citi, Kathyrn Rasmussen of Capital Dynamics Clean Energy and Infrastructure, Pedro Almeida of EDP Renewables North America and as moderator PFR’s editor, Richard Metcalf. …
Mayer Brown’s David K. Burton and Jeffrey G. Davis both Tax Transactions & Consulting partners and part of the firm’s Renewable Energy group co-hosted a heavily attended webinar on how tax reform is impacting the tax equity market and certain renewable energy structures with Vadim Ovchinnikov, CFA, CPA and Gintaras Sadauskas of Alfa Energy Advisors.…
Below are soundbites from panelists from the Renewable Energy Finance Forum (“REFF”) Wall Street on June 19 and 20. The mood was upbeat. There were many references to a “wall of cash chasing projects” as a metaphor for how competitive it is to win bids to finance or purchase projects.
The soundbites are edited for clarity and are organized by topic, rather than in chronological order. They were prepared without the benefit of a transcript or recording.
The topics covered include the tax equity, debt and M&A markets, C&I solar, offshore wind, bonus depreciation, storage, YieldCos and others.
Tax Equity Market
“Solar tax equity is 30 to 38 percent of the capital stack of a project. Wind tax equity is 47 to 62 percent of the capital stack of a project.” – Managing Director, Boutique Investment Bank
“We are seeing a lot more wind. We are using our tax equity capacity in wind in 2018. Solar is looking good for 2019 and beyond.” Managing Director, Trust Company
“This year we will invest more in wind than in solar.” – Managing Director, Money Center Bank
“We are seeing tax equity portfolios that are seasoned trade in a secondary market. [Generally These are tax equity portfolios] that haven’t flipped on time or that [have the benefit of material cash distributions] but not tax” credits. – Managing Director, American Multinational Financial Services Company
“There is more tax equity now than there was before tax reform.” Managing Director, REIT
“2018 is a slow down due to tax reform and tariffs.” Managing Director, National Bank
“There is a lot less tax equity capacity due to the lower tax rate.” – Managing Director, American Multi-National Investment Bank
[Explained: there may be more tax equity investors in the market than last year; however, last year the corporate tax rate was 35 percent, and this year it is 21 percent, so a typical tax equity investor has 40 percent less tax appetite (and ability to invest in tax equity) in 2018 than it did in 2017.]
“If you are in BEAT [(i.e., the base erosion anti-avoidance tax in enacted as part of 2018 tax reform)], you cannot compete in tax equity. A couple of investors were hit with BEAT and exited.” – Managing Director, American Multi-National Investment Bank
“We get ten requests for tax equity a week and say ‘yes’ to less than one a week. We have to prioritize opportunities.” – Managing Director, American Multi-National Investment Bank…