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POLITICS: PennAve

Tesla picks Nevada for battery factory

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Politics,Transportation,ARRA,PennAve,Energy and Environment,Nevada,Zack Colman,Technology,Electric Vehicles,Tesla

Electric car manufacturer Tesla Motors has reportedly chosen Nevada as the site for its coveted battery factory.

A Tesla media official stopped just shy of affirming the CNBC report, though the official left little room for any alternative explanation.

"What I can confirm is that Tesla looks forward to joining [Nevada] Governor [Brian] Sandoval and legislative leaders tomorrow in Carson City at 4 p.m. for a major economic development announcement," the official told the Washington Examiner.

The GOP Nevada governor's office said it would hold a Thursday press conference for "a major economic development announcement." The state beat out New Mexico, Texas, Arizona and California for the project worth $5 billion to $6 billion.

A Detroit News story earlier this week said Nevada could offer an array of tax incentives, including the elimination of personal and corporate income taxes, no taxation on corporate shares and up to 50 percent abatement on personal property taxes for up to 10 years. The proximity to Tesla's Fremont, Calif., assembly plant also likely proved a draw.

Tesla has been championed by the Obama administration as a federal stimulus success story, paying back a $465 million federal loan guarantee last year a decade ahead of schedule. The loan program has been a target of conservatives on Capitol Hill for picking winners and losers, as a handful of loan guarantee recipients have gone bust at the taxpayers' expense.

Despite criticism by the Right about the federal loan program that helped jump start Tesla, all but one of the states — California — vying for the electric car-maker's "gigafactory" are led by Republican governors.

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