By Richard Garrett, Jr.

Your voice for conservation at the Wyoming State Legislature

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Please help us support House Bill 79.

The Wyoming Outdoor Council is working with a broad coalition of organizations, trade groups, and contractors to generate support at the Wyoming legislature for the renewal of a sales tax exemption for small renewable energy systems.

As most of you know, the 2012 Wyoming legislative session (a biennium budget session) started this week and is already well under way.

We are asking you to help us get the word out about this bill.

You can read House Bill 79 at this link.

How you can help

Representative Esquibel from Cheyenne is sponsoring legislation to extend Wyoming’s sales tax exemption for small renewable energy systems—essentially rooftop solar and backyard wind.

Rep. Esquibel has worked to get a good group of co-sponsors including, Reps. Byrd, Gingery, Goggles, Illoway, Nicholas, Petroff, Roscoe, Vranish, and Dave Zwonitzer.

But he needs your help to get your representative to vote for the bill on introduction.

HB 79: Renewable Resources Electricity Generation Exemption could be up for an introductory vote as early as tomorrow, Thursday, February 16, in the State House so please take a moment to contact your Representative as soon as possible!

Here are some talking points that you can use in an email to your representative. But what is best is if you put things in your own words. If you have a small renewable energy system installed or have some connection to the renewable energy sector, your message is particularly important.

  • More than 150 homes and businesses throughout the state have connected a small renewable energy system to the electrical grid as a way to reduce their power demand and costs.
  • Given Wyoming’s abundant wind and sunshine, there is great opportunity for more Wyoming citizens, businesses, and local governments to install these small renewable energy systems.
  • In addition to benefits for customers, the installation and maintenance of small renewable energy systems are also job creators. An increasing number of people in Wyoming are directly and indirectly employed in companies that design and install home and business-based renewable energy systems.
  • This growing business sector presents a great opportunity for Wyoming to take advantage of our abundant renewable energy resources and create a win-win situation by adding jobs and economic development, allowing utilities to save costs of building new generation sources, and, most importantly, saving Wyomingites money on their electricity bills.
  • The legislature has the opportunity to foster the renewable energy businesses and their customers by supporting an extension to Wyoming’s state sales tax exemption for small grid-tied renewable energy systems.
  • The sales tax exemption is the ONLY incentive the state provides to encourage home and business-based renewable energy. It is sound policy, with many benefits and very little cost in terms of lost revenue.

Please ask your Representative to support House Bill 79 in the 2012 Budget Session and help this business sector grow and thrive!

You can find contact information for members of the Wyoming House of Representatives by clicking here.

If you need assistance identifying your representative, please don’t hesitate to ask me.

Thanks for your action!

Contact: Richard Garrett, Wyoming Outdoor Council legislative advocate, richard@wyomingoutdoorcouncil.org; 307-349-2423.

West Edge