Recovering Biodiesel Plant Faces New Foe: Tax Man

John Davis

Since we’re rapidly approaching tax deadline day, it seems only appropriate to talk about taxes and biodiesel. A Maryland biodiesel plant recovering from a devastating explosion that killed a worker in 2008 and the struggles the biodiesel industry in general has faced in the past couple of years is now facing a new foe: the tax man.

This story from says officials with the Greenlight Biofuels plant in Princess Anne, MD have asked Somerset County Commissioners to waive a portion of a personal property tax bill to help get the facility fully operational by the end of the year:

“We are really trying hard with this plant,” James Kingdon, president of Greenlight Biofuels, said during a meeting Tuesday.

The company owed a $50,000 bill for 2010-11 but was successful in having it reduced by 50 percent in an appeal to the Department of Assessments and Taxation, Kingdon said.

It also owes $58,000 plus $10,000 interest on its 2009-10 tax bill but missed the deadline for an appeal, so company officials are appealing it to the county in hope of an abatement.

In fairness to the commissioners, they’re not sure if the law would even allow them to grant the waiver. County codes say tax credits can be awarded only to manufacturers with 10 or more employees; Greenlight has just seven right now.