Proposed tax extenders gives biodiesel certainty

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DES MOINES, Iowa (KCRG) - Every year there are groups of tax credits that expire and Congress decides to extend or end them. And for years, the biodiesel industry had asked for a long-term tax credit extension.

The House Ways and Means Committee last week proposed a 7-year phase down extension.

Much longer than usual according to Iowa Biodiesel Board Executive Director Grant Kimberley, he says having that much time could give the industry a chance to plan ahead, "Typically the most certainty the industry's ever had is just maybe a couple of years. And in most cases, the credits are only one year. So, it's hard to make business decisions and investments and infrastructure and facilities and upgrades to make the industries as competitive as possible when you don't have that certainty."

Iowa is the nation's largest biodiesel producer with 12 plants in the state. Kimberley says having seven years would be critical to making long-term investments so the industry can be more competitive.

The proposal still needs to be voted on and will need support from the full House and Senate.

Kimberley is optimistic, "Sounds like the Senate Finance Committee which has jurisdiction on the other side would probably support it as well but we'll have to wait and see what happens."

Tax extenders could be delayed, the House is not taking votes this week in honor of President George H.W. Bush. The delay could derail many lame-duck bills including the Farm Bill.