U.S. appliance maker Maytag said it could earn tens of millions of dollars in federal tax credits thanks to a provision included in the federal energy bill that will help expand U.S. sales of super-efficient clothes washers, refrigerators, and dishwashers.
"The appliance manufacturers' tax credit will support our future product innovations and is expected to have a positive impact on the company's overall financial performance. In addition, the energy bill is a winning proposition for both the consumers and the environment," said Maytag Chairman and CEO Ralph Hake.
The provision was first introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas, and in the House by Congressmen Jim Nussle of Iowa and John Tanner of Tennessee. Maytag has manufacturing operations in Newton and Amana, Iowa, Searcy, Arkansas, and Jackson and Cleveland, Tennessee.
Mr. Hake noted, "We commend our congressional sponsors for their leadership and dedication to energy efficiency and applaud the Congress for meeting the President's deadline."
The credit, which applies only to U.S. production, provides manufacturers with a credit of U.S. $50 to $175 for each super-efficient appliance produced in excess of a rolling baseline. The baseline is the average number of qualifying appliances produced in the previous three calendar years.
The maximum credit for each appliance manufacturer is $75 million over a 2-year period beginning in 2006. Maytag said it could earn tens of millions of dollars in tax credits, depending on future production levels and ability to utilize tax credits.
"Maytag has been a leader in promoting the appliance manufacturers' tax credit for more than 5 years," said David Steiner, Maytag's vice president, Government Affairs. "It will encourage further development of new energy-efficient, environmentally-friendly appliances and will also help support American appliance manufacturing jobs."
Also included in the energy bill is a provision adopting federal energy and water efficiency standards for residential-style commercial clothes washers. The new standard, for the first time, will require certain clothes washers to meet water efficiency requirements at the federal level.
Other provisions include expanded programs for state-sponsored incentives, including authorization of up to $250 million over 5 years to provide rebates to consumers purchasing energy-efficient appliances; educational programs to inform owners of coin-operated laundries, multi-family housing, and other sites where commercial clothes washers are located about the new energy and water efficiency standards; and authorization to establish energy-efficiency standards for refrigerated beverage vending machines.
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