Hawaii Economists: Residential Solar Could Cost State $1.4 Billion
State tax credits for residents who install rooftop solar systems are no longer a good deal for the state and could end up costing Hawaii taxpayers $1.4 billion over the long term, according to a new report by University of Hawaii economists.
“We’re looking at a really tremendous burden on the state in terms of lost tax revenue,” said Makena Coffman, a lead author of the study and an economics professor at UH’s Department of Urban and Regional Planning.
The report, issued on Monday by the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization, emphasizes that rooftop solar panels are a lucrative investment even without current state tax credits.
The findings come as solar and environmental advocacy groups lobby state lawmakers to preserve generous tax incentives that allow homeowners to recoup 35 percent of a photovoltaic system's cost, or $5,000, whichever is less.