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May 31 [press release]-- Treasury and IRS released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for the Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit program under Section 48(e) of the Internal Revenue Code, which was established on February 13, 2023. The NPRM proposes rules for the application process and technical guidance for this program, which provides up to a 20-percentage point boost to the Investment Tax Credit for up to 1.8 gigawatts annually of solar and wind energy projects (with maximum output of less than 5 megawatts) located in low-income communities or otherwise serving low-income populations.

The NPRM reflects recommendations from a broad array of industry and environmental justice stakeholders to evaluate applications on an expedited basis and provide applicants clarity as quickly as possible. Treasury and IRS intend to release final guidance related to the 2023 program prior to applications opening later this year.
 
June 1 [FRN] -- The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Treasury, issues a notice of proposed rulemaking concerning the low-income communities bonus energy investment credit program established pursuant to the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. Applicants investing in certain solar and wind powered-electricity generation facilities may apply for an allocation of environmental justice solar and wind capacity limitation to increase the amount of an energy investment credit for the taxable year in which the facility is placed in service. This document describes proposed definitions and requirements that would be applicable for the program allocating the calendar year 2023 capacity limitation, which also would inform guidance applicable for future program years. The proposed rules would affect applicants seeking allocations of environmental justice solar and wind capacity limitation. Written or electronic comments must be received by June 30, 2023.

Section 13103 of Public Law 117–169, 136 Stat. 1818, 1921 (August 16, 2022), commonly known as the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 (IRA), added new section 48(e) to the Internal Revenue Code (Code) to increase the amount of the energy investment credit determined under section 48(a) (section 48 credit) with respect to eligible property that is part of a qualified solar and wind facility that is awarded an allocation of environmental justice solar and wind capacity limitation (Capacity Limitation). This document contains proposed definitions and rules relating to the allocation of Capacity Limitation for calendar year 2023 (2023 Capacity Limitation).

The amount of the energy investment credit determined under the section 48 credit for a taxable year is generally calculated by multiplying the basis of each energy property placed in service during that taxable year by the energy percentage (as defined in section 48(a)(2)). Section 48(e) increases the section 48 credit by increasing the energy percentage used to calculate the amount of the section 48 credit (section 48(e) Increase) in the case of qualified solar and wind facilities that receive an allocation of Capacity Limitation. The term “qualified solar and wind facility” is defined in section 48(e)(2) to mean any facility that (i) generates electricity solely from a wind facility, solar energy property, or small wind energy property; (ii) has a maximum net output of less than 5 megawatts (as measured in alternating current); and (iii) is described in at least one of four categories in section 48(e)(2)(A)(iii) (and in part II of this Background).

As described in part III of this Background, section 48(e)(4)(A) directs the Secretary of the Treasury or her delegate (Secretary) to “provide procedures to allow for an efficient allocation” of Capacity Limitation to qualified solar and wind facilities. Later this year, the Treasury Department and the IRS expect to issue details for the program applicable for the calendar year 2023 Capacity Limitation, covering a comprehensive set of procedures and rules for applicants. The majority of the information regarding the program's details will be procedural rules. Some of the information that the Treasury Department and the IRS intend to include, however, will provide more substantive details that cover threshold definitions and requirements that must be established to make allocations efficiently and effectively. Those aspects of the program's details are the subject of this notice of proposed rulemaking. The Treasury Department and the IRS expect that final guidance will be reflected in regulations.

Feb 13 press release: https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/jy1269 [second half]
May 31 press release: https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/jy1510 [second half]
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2023-11718 [12 pages]

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