Proposed 35% tax concerns solar installers

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Springfield, MO Just two months ago, we told you about hot times for the solar industry, and how renewable energy jobs in Missouri jumped 15% this year.

"People like saving money on their utility bills and believe in our clean energy future that's coming," said Caleb Arthur, CEO of U.S. Sun Solar.

But, will the extended forecast for solar power look so sunny?

As part of his America-first platform, President Trump says U.S. consumers and companies should buy solar panels made here at home. So, to encourage that, he proposes a 35% tariff on all panels imported from foreign countries.

"We currently get a lot of our solar panels from Canada," Arthur stated. "The problem is the United States produces less than half of what we install each year. So there is a huge need that we have to keep importing solar panels,"

The decreasing cost of solar has been making it attractive to consumers. Companies fear tacking on 35% would hurt business. Industry experts say if the tariff takes effect, 30,000 solar jobs could be lost in the initial months.

"I would hate for one of the fast growing job sectors in the state clamped down."

U.S. Sun Solar is preparing for the president to keep his promise. They're stocking up on panels now, and calculating ways they can absorb costs without passing them on to their customers.

"I just want everyone out there to be able to call their elected official on a federal level, and say a prayer for the solar industry that everything turns out fine," said Arthur.

Read the original version of this article at www.ky3.com.