Expired, Repealed, and Archived South Carolina Incentives and Laws
The following is a list of expired, repealed, and archived incentives, laws, regulations, funding opportunities, or other initiatives related to alternative fuels and vehicles, advanced technologies, or air quality.
A taxpayer that purchases, constructs, or installs, and places into service a qualified commercial facility for distributing or dispensing biofuels is eligible for an income tax credit of up to 25% of the purchase, construction, and installation costs. Eligible infrastructure includes pumps, storage tanks, and related equipment used exclusively for distributing, dispensing, and storing biofuels. A qualified facility must clearly label the equipment used to store or dispense the fuel as being associated with biofuel. The credit must be taken in three equal annual installments beginning with the taxable year in which the facility is placed into service. Qualifying fuels include blends containing at least 70% ethanol (E70) dispensed at the retail level for use in motor vehicles, and pure ethanol or biodiesel fuel dispensed by a distributor or facility that blends these non-petroleum liquids with gasoline or diesel fuel for use in motor vehicles. (Reference South Carolina Code of Laws 12-6-3620)
A taxpayer that constructs and places into service a commercial facility for producing biofuel is eligible for a tax credit of up to 25% of the cost of constructing or renovating a building and equipping the facility. Production of biofuel includes intermediate steps such as milling, crushing, and handling feedstock and the distillation and manufacturing of the final product. The entire credit must be taken in seven equal annual installments beginning with the taxable year in which the facility is placed into service. Qualifying fuels include liquid non-petroleum based fuel that can be placed in motor vehicle fuel tanks and be used to operate on-road vehicles, including all forms of fuel commonly or commercially known or sold as biodiesel and ethanol. (Reference South Carolina Code of Laws 12-6-3610)
The SouthCarolinaSAVES (SCSAVES) Green Community Program provides low cost financing to eligible government entities, institutions, and commercial and industrial entities for qualified conservation measures, including natural gas and propane vehicle conversions, incremental costs of eligible vehicles, and alternative fueling infrastructure. Financing is available for up to 100% of the project cost ranging from $500,000 to $5 million. Projects must have a payback period of no more than 15 years. The low cost financing is made possible through Qualified Energy Conservation Bonds allocated by the South Carolina Energy Office and issued by the South Carolina Jobs-Economic Development Authority. For more information, see the SCSAVES website.
The South Carolina Clean Energy Industry Manufacturing Market Development Advisory Commission (Commission) will assist with the development of clean energy technologies, materials, and products, including advanced vehicle, alternative transportation fuel, battery manufacturing, and hydrogen fuel cell industries. The Commission issued a final report in September 2015, with a description and analysis of the existing clean energy manufacturing industry, job development potential, market potential, incentives offered by neighboring states, and recommendations for in-state production incentives, benchmarks to increase clean energy manufacturing, and marketing and public education programs. (Reference South Carolina Code of Laws 11-55-100)
For taxable years before 2017, an income tax credit is available for the in-state purchase or lease of a new PHEV. For the purpose of this incentive, a PHEV is a vehicle equipped with an internal combustion and an electric engine with an all-electric range of at least nine miles, uses an external source of energy to charge the battery, and has at least four kilowatt-hours (kWh) of battery capacity. The credit is equal to $667, plus $111 if the vehicle has at least five kWh of battery capacity, plus an additional $111 for each additional kWh, with a maximum allowed credit of $2,000. Low- or medium-speed vehicles do not qualify for this credit. Total claims for all taxpayers in one year may not exceed $200,000 and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. (Reference South Carolina Code of Laws 12-6-3376)
South Carolina residents that claim the federal Alternative Motor Vehicle Credit for fuel cell vehicles are eligible for a state income tax credit equal to 20% of the federal credit. If the amount of the state credit exceeds the taxpayer's liability for the applicable tax year, any unused portion of the credit may be carried forward and claimed for up to five additional years. (Reference South Carolina Code of Laws 12-6-3377)
Through June 2015, the South Carolina Department of Education may direct 5% to 10% of fiscal year school bus funds to lease or purchase alternative fuel school buses and provide ongoing maintenance and fuel costs as part of a pilot program for three school districts. The participating school districts must pay for the alternative fueling infrastructure, the incremental cost between a conventional and alternative fuel bus, and training for bus maintenance staff. The school districts must also submit quarterly reports. The South Carolina Department of Education must submit a final cost report to the Senate Finance Committee and House Ways and Means Committee. (Reference House Bill 4701, 2014)
Whenever practical and economically feasible, all state agencies operating alternative fuel vehicles must use alternative fuels in those vehicles. Private businesses are encouraged to increase the use of alternative fuels in the state. (Reference Executive Order 2001-35)
Ethanol retailers selling fuel blends of at least 70% ethanol (E70) are eligible for a $0.05 incentive per gallon of ethanol blended fuel sold, provided that the fuel is subject to the South Carolina motor fuel user fee. Additionally, biodiesel retailers are eligible for a $0.25 incentive per gallon of biodiesel (B100) sold as pure biodiesel or as part of a biodiesel blend, provided that the blend contains at least 2% biodiesel (B2). These incentives apply only to fuel sold before July 1, 2012. Biodiesel is defined as a fuel for motor vehicle diesel engines comprised of vegetable oils or animal fats and meeting ASTM specifications D6751 or D975. (Reference South Carolina Code of Laws 12-63-20)
The South Carolina Research Authority administers the South Carolina Hydrogen Infrastructure Development Fund, which provides funding for grants that promote the development and deployment of hydrogen production, storage, distribution, and dispensing infrastructure and related products and services that enable the growth of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies in the state. Taxpayers may receive a 25% credit against state income taxes, insurance premium taxes, and certain license fees for contributions made to the fund. (Reference South Carolina Code of Laws 11-46)
Progress Energy is conducting a pilot program through April 2013 that provides qualified residential customers with Level 2 EVSE. Progress Energy will install the EVSE at the home (covering up to $1,500 in installation costs) and service the equipment for the duration of the pilot. Progress Energy will remotely access the EVSE to collect information to better understand charging habits and the impact on the power grid. At the end of the pilot, participants will be able to keep the EVSE at no additional cost. As of May 2012, the Plugged In Program has reached capacity and is no longer accepting applications. For more information, see the Progress Energy Plugged In Program website.
Duke Energy's Duke Energy Charge|Carolina pilot program provides qualified residential customers with Level 2 EVSE and up to $1,000 for EVSE installation. Duke Energy will service the equipment and remotely access the EVSE to collect information in an effort to better understand charging habits and the impact on the power grid. At the end of the two-year pilot, participants will be able to keep the EVSE for a fee of $250 per unit.
Qualified corn-based ethanol and soy-based biodiesel producers are eligible for an income tax credit of $0.20 per gallon of fuel produced through 2016. Producers using feedstocks other than corn or soy oil are eligible for $0.30 per gallon tax credit. An eligible production facility must be operating at a production rate of at least 25% of its name plate design capacity and must maintain that production rate for at least six months, before denaturing, on or before December 31, 2011. The credit is allowed for up to 60 months beginning with the first month for which the facility is eligible to receive the credit and ending before December 31, 2016. Beginning January 1, 2017, the credit changes to $0.075 per gallon of fuel produced. The credit may be carried forward for ten years. Additional restrictions apply. (Reference South Carolina Code of Laws 12-6-3600)
For taxable years through 2011, an income tax credit is available for qualified research and development expenditures, which include developing feedstocks and production processes for cellulosic ethanol, and algae-derived and waste grease-derived biodiesel. Qualified expenditures involving cellulosic ethanol and algae-derived diesel are eligible for a 25% credit, and qualified expenditures involving waste grease-derived biodiesel are eligible for a 10% credit. Cellulosic ethanol is defined as fuel derived from ligno-cellulosic materials, including wood chips, corn stover, and switchgrass. (Reference South Carolina Code of Laws 12-6-3631)
For taxable years beginning after 2007 and before 2011, an income tax credit of $2,000 is available for the in-state purchase or lease of a PHEV. For the purpose of this incentive, a PHEV is a vehicle that shares the same benefits as an internal combustion and electric engine with an all-electric range of not less than nine miles. (Reference Senate Bill 243, 2007, and South Carolina Code of Laws 12-63-20)
The following was repealed by Act No. 261, 2008: Beginning July 1, 2008, a $300 sales tax rebate may be applied to in-state purchases of the following: flexible fuel vehicles (FFVs) capable of operating on E85 motor fuel; hydrogen fuel cell vehicles; electric vehicles, hybrid electric vehicles; plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs); and vehicles with a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency city fuel economy rating of at least 30 miles per gallon. Additionally, a sales tax rebate up to $500 has been established for the purchase of equipment that results in the conversion of a conventional hybrid electric vehicle to a PHEV, or for equipment to convert a conventional vehicle to operate on propane, compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, hydrogen, or E85. These rebates only apply to vehicles and equipment purchased prior to July 1, 2013. (Reference Senate Bill 243, 2007, and South Carolina Code of Laws 12-63-20)
For tax years beginning after December 31, 2005, there are business or personal income tax credits of a) $0.20 for each gallon of biodiesel motor fuel produced mostly from soybean oil and sold, and b) $0.30 for each gallon of biodiesel motor fuel a majority of which is produced from feedstock other than soybean oil and sold, up to a maximum of three million gallons per year from each facility, for a maximum of five years for each facility. Credits are available for not more than one facility in each county in any calendar year, with priority given to the first facility in a county that produces biodiesel motor fuel using soybean oil as the feedstock. Credits are available to individuals or businesses without regard to a per county limitation. These credits may be carried forward for up to three years. Payments must be made upon compliance with verification procedures set forth by the Department of Agriculture. (Reference House Bill 4810, 2006)