The follow newsletter was written by Christopher Mansour, Vice President, Government Affairs for Solar Energy Industries Association. Learn more about the benefits of the solar Investment Tax Credit on the SEIA website.

The elections are over, but the critical time is NOW.

Unless Congress acts in the next few weeks, new solar projects could be in jeopardy.

Tell your representative to include “Commence Construction” for the Solar Investment Tax Credit in the tax extenders package to provide certainty by allowing developers to qualify for the current solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) when they start construction.

The ITC is set to expire at the end of 2016, but investment will slow long before the credit expires. The Commence Construction change would help drive an additional 4,000 MW of solar capacity, and would create tens of thousands of additional new domestic jobs.

It’s critically important for our leaders in Washington to hear your voice and for Congress to work together to find real solutions that will grow our economy and put more people to work.

The solar industry, amid the greatest economic downturn of our generation, grew 3000%. The U.S. now has 15,900 megawatts of installed solar electric capacity, enough to power more than 3.2 million American homes. Employment in the American solar industry has grown from an estimated 15,000 employees in 2005 to over 143,000 today, working in over 6,100 companies in all 50 states, the vast majority in small businesses.

But the industry is heading for a cliff and the Section 48 Commence Construction change can help.

Many Senators and Representatives are supporting this policy, but they still need to hear from you.