CALIFORNIA is moving to increase property taxes on power plants.
The State Board of Equalization voted unanimously at the end of June to instruct the staff to draft an amendment to shift responsibility for assessing utility property from local governments to the state. There is also a bill in the state legislature to do the same thing. Cogeneration facilities and small power plants that generate 50 megawatts or less would be exempted from the change. State assessment means power plants will no longer be covered by Proposition 13, which limits increases in assessed values to 2% a year.
Repeal of the current system is expected to place 41 power plants under state jurisdiction. An independent power group has organized to fight the change.