A state House panel has unanimously approved a bill to provide tax incentives to the ailing coal industry.
House Majority Floor Leader Rocky Adkins says his bill will permit tax breaks on machinery and manufacturing for coal-related companies. The Democrat says the breaks are similar to incentives enjoyed by car manufacturing plants in the state and reduce economic strain on the industry.
“Those are everything from sales tax credits on the materials, pieces and parts it takes to build an assembly line, or put the pieces and parts in whatever operation or manufacturer or industrial complex that it may be, whether it be at AK Steel in the Ashland area, whether it be at Toyota or Ford. That’s going on at Toyota and Ford as we speak,” said Adkins.
According to the New York Times, Kentucky gave nearly $570 million in incentives to the coal industry in 2012 alone. Last year, coal jobs in Kentucky reached their lowest point since 1927, with over 2,300 jobs lost in 2013.
The bill now heads to the House floor.