New proposal for fuel tax credit
Louisiana's alternative fuel tax credit's original intent might soon be decided by a court. The state's department of revenue has proposed changes that would highlight the credit's true intent, which it says was originally written to encourage consumers to use natural gas or CNG vehicles and not flex-fuel. State Representative Jeff Thompson says that's opened the door for the public's opinion.
"At this stage, the public has the opportunity for input," he said. "There will be a public hearing for input in person on October 25."
Thompson says the proposal and public input will then go to the Ways and Means Committee to decide what should go into law.
"If they don't do that, then automatically on December the 20th, I believe it is, the proposed rules as promulgated will be effective," he said.
As of right now, you can still apply for the tax credit, though it would join several others in limbo. The department of revenue hasn't decided how to handle those claims. Tax Manager Patrick Caraway says it could be a risk, and that risk will be settled in a courtroom.
"What I think will happen is that you'll have large taxpayers, maybe with large fleets, that will probably challenge that in court," Caraway said. "Then the courts will end up deciding what the true intent of the statute was."
caraways says under the proposal no vehicle with a single fuel tank that uses both gas and an alternative fuel will qualify for the tax credit. Between April and June of this year between $6 and $7 million worth of alternative fuel tax credits were given. There is currently a backlog of $4 million worth.
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