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Energy Tax Credit Deadline Fast Approaching


Dec. 18, 2007 — Time is running out on the chance to get up to a $2,000 energy tax credit on your 2006 income tax return. The deadline is Dec. 31.
The tax credit, coupled with the V.I. Energy Office's rebate program, make energy efficiency a realistic and affordable option for many.
"This is to eliminate the cost obstacle," Energy Office spokesman Don Buchanan said Monday.
Energy Office Director Bevan Smith said in a news release that a tax credit is usually more valuable than a deduction because a tax credit reduces the amount of tax owed, while a deduction only removes a percentage of the tax that is owed.
In order to take the credit on your 2006 income tax, buy a solar energy system for your home, solar water heaters or an energy efficiency home retrofit by Dec. 31.
The tax credit covers up to 30 percent of the cost of the energy-efficient items, up to $2,000.
Folks who spring for a hybrid vehicle are eligible for a tax credit of up to $3,400.
Purchases made after Dec. 31 will then be eligible for a tax credit on 2007 income tax returns.
And that's not all, V.I. residents can also take advantage of the Energy Office's rebate program.
Buchanan said that the program continues through Sept. 30, 2007.
Purchasers get a rebate on photovoltaic panels: $3.50 per watt with a limit of one kilowatt.
They are limited to one rebate per rebate cycle on solar hot water heaters. The rebate for hot water heaters varies by size: 81 to 121 gallons runs $1,000; 40 to 80 gallons, $700; and 39 gallons and under, $500.
The rebate for wind turbine generators runs 20 percent off the retail price.
Get 15 percent off the retail price for sine wave inverters and 25 percent off electric water heater timers. There is a limit of one on the water heater timers.
However, you must shop at certified rebate dealers to get the rebate.
Shop for photovoltaic panels, solar hot water heaters, wind turbine generators, sine wave inverters, and electric water heater times at two locations on St. Croix: Sierra Technical Co. (779-3641) and West Indies Solar (773-4790). Quality Electric Supply (773-4640) has electric water heater timers only.
On St. Thomas, shop for those same items at Altona Trading and Sales (774-3373), Pools "R" Weeeee (714-3001), Quantum (777-5638); Silent Power (774-5875), Virgin Energies (775-1266), and West Indies Windsurfing (775-6530).
Buying energy star appliances such as air conditioners, ceiling fans, clothes washer, and refrigerators net a 20 percent rebate from the Energy Office.
Get $5 off three single or one package of four or more Energy Star compact fluorescent light bulbs.
Shop only at certified dealers. On St. Croix, they are Best Furniture and Appliances (778-6440), Carlos Furniture House (719-0304), Carlos Warehouse (778-6566), Oscar Refrigeration and Furniture (773-1740), and Quality Electric Supply (773-4640).
On St. Thomas, shop at Appliance Plus (694-9411), Bulbs Plus (774-1055) and Expo by Appliance Plus (775-9411).
To learn more about saving energy, visit the V.I. Energy Office website.
Call the Energy Office at 773-10822 on St. Croix and 774-3320 on St. Thomas.
If you have questions about the energy credit on your income tax form, call the Internal Revenue Bureau at 774-5865.
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