LOS ANGELES (CBS) — A Southland lawmaker wants to increase oversight of tax breaks to alternative energy companies in the wake of the Solyndra bankruptcy filing.
State Senator Alex Padilla (D-Pacoima) has called for a hearing on Wednesday by the Energy, Utilities and Communications Committee and the Committee on Governance and Finance to review California's "Advanced Transportation and Alternative Source Manufacturing Sales and Use Tax Exclusion" program.
Padilla, who authored the bill, will ask if regulations need to be changed after the state awarded $25 million in sales tax breaks to the failed Fremont solar startup, the Associated Press reported.
"We have a responsibility to stop and evaluate the program to ensure it is meeting its goals of promoting and incentivizing California-based green manufacturing jobs," said Senator Alex Padilla." We want to make sure there is accountability, transparency and tangible outcomes that benefit the state."
State Treasurer Bill Lockyer, California solar industry representatives and officials with the California Legislative Analyst's office will participate in the hearing.
Figures from Lockyer's office show the California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority approved 33 applicants for $104 million in sales tax exemptions — including the now-bankrupt Solyndra.
Lockyer suspended the program to new applicants in September while the authority reviewed its application process.
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