Nevada Governor signs $1.3 billion tax break package for electric car maker Tesla

Fri Sep 12, 2014 2:59am EDT
 
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By Sandra Chereb

CARSON CITY Nevada (Reuters) - Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval signed a package of bills on Thursday to provide $1.3 billion in tax breaks and other incentives for Tesla Motors, putting a bow on the deal for the electric car company to build a massive factory in the state.

Sandoval said the agreement has "changed the trajectory of our state forever" during the signing ceremony late on Thursday, shortly after the four bills were unanimously passed by both legislative chambers.

"Nevada has announced to the world - not to the country, but to the world - that we are ready to lead," Sandoval said, to applause.

The biggest chunk of the deal won support in day two of a special session called by Sandoval to implement an agreement for Tesla to locate its planned $5 billion lithium-ion battery factory in an industrial park 20 miles east of Reno along Interstate 80.

Tesla, founded by entrepreneur Elon Musk, decided to locate its factory in Nevada after negotiating with several states, including Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and the company's home state of California.

To clinch the deal, Sandoval promised that tax credits and other incentives would be available for up to 20 years.

The biggest chunk of the deal gives Tesla sales tax exemptions for 20 years, a perk estimated at $725 million. In addition, the company would save more than an estimated $300 million in payroll and other taxes through 2024.

The factory is key to Nevada's efforts to revitalize its economy, which was hard-hit by the mortgage meltdown and the Great Recession, and has yet to fully recover.   Continued...

 
A Tesla Motors logo is shown at a Tesla Motors dealership at Corte Madera Village, an outdoor retail mall, in Corte Madera, California May 8, 2014.   REUTERS/Robert Galbraith