Bill would give tax incentive for ’07 buys

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A U.S. Senate bill would give a 5 percent tax credit to buyers of 2007 trucks with cleaner diesel engines.

U.S. Sens. Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) and Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) introduced SB 1240, which would allow an investment tax credit equal to 5 percent of the cost of large truck diesel engines compliant with 2007 federal environmental standards.

The credit would apply to any purchases during calendar year 2007. The credit would be part of the general business credit that would be carried over to the next taxable year.

The federal government can require OEMs to produce engines that comply with higher standards but “cannot mandate the purchase of these clean diesel trucks,” Smith said.

“Customers always have the option of holding on to older trucks longer, rebuilding older engines, leasing older trucks, or turning to the used truck market,” Smith said. “They can also simply buy more trucks today, with older design components and without the cleanest technology, and defer the purchase of cleaner trucks.”

The bill has been sent to the Senate Finance Committee, the typical first stop for Senate tax bills.