Missouri’s highest court has stopped a solar energy tax exemption in the state. The Court ruled the 2013 law, granting a property tax exemption for certain energy systems, was not allowed under the state constitution. In the case, Greene County Assessor Brent Johnson v. Springfield Solar 1, LLC., the privately owned solar farm supplying energy to City Utilities in Springfield challenged Greene County’s assessment of property taxes from 2017- 2019. It cited a 2013 state law that exempts “solar energy systems not held for resale” from taxation “for state, county or local purposes.” The Court ruled that because the Missouri Constitution does not grant the Legislature the power to exempt ‘solar energy systems not held for resale’ from taxation, the 2013 law is unconstitutional. Greene County Collector of Revenue Allen Icet told news outlets that Springfield Solar 1, LLC. owes more than $423,000 in taxes.
This year, the Missouri Legislature passed Senate Bill 745 and Senate Bill 820. The laws prevent homeowners associations from banning solar panels and exempts the purchase of solar panels or components used for solar power collectors from sales taxes.