CARSON CITY — Nevada’s aviation industry and big data centers that drive global Internet commerce would receive tax breaks under two bills approved Wednesday by the state Senate.
Senate Bill 170 would allow data centers that make a capital investment of at least $50 million to apply for reduced property and sales taxes for 10 years. Those making $100 million investment or more could receive similar abatements for up to 20 years.
Switch, the state’s largest data center, announced plans in January for a $1 billion expansion at its Las Vegas facility and to build a new $1 billion center in Northern Nevada outside Reno.
At a hearing earlier this session, economists said data companies that handle Internet commerce replace massive racks of servers valued at anywhere from $250,000 to $1 million each every two or three years.
Economists project the SB170 would create thousands of jobs, generate hundreds of millions of dollars in salaries as well as hundreds of millions in tax revenue, despite the abatements.
Senate Bill 93 would give partial sales and personal property tax abatements to aviation companies that own, operate, manufacture, service, test or assemble aircraft or aircraft components.
In earlier testimony before the Senate Committee on Revenue and Economic Development, supporters of SB93 said Nevada would see almost immediate economic benefits because of an already present work force, aviation companies and demand, especially in tourist-driven Las Vegas. Nevada is one of only five states in the continental United States and the only one in the West that does not offer aviation tax incentives, according to testimony presented to the committee.
Steve Hill, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, said because Nevada charges full sales tax on aviation parts, aircraft owners — from business travelers to helicopter tour operators — frequently fly over the state line to other states where they can buy parts and maintenance more cheaply.
The aviation industry tax abatements do not apply to the purchase of an aircraft.
Both bills were sought by the economic development agency and were approved unanimously. The measures now go to the Assembly.
Contact Sandra Chereb at email@example.com or 775-687-3901. Find her on Twitter: @SandraChereb.