By purchasing shares you will:
- Bring social benefit to the community – it is expected to generate more than £1 million for local community projects over the 20 year Project life
- Help to generate clean electricity Participate in ownership of a local renewable energy source
- Have an equal vote with other Members regardless of your number of shares
- Be able to hold the HoTTWind@Longley Board to account and to elect Directors
- Be eligible to stand as a Board Director
- Be eligible for interest paid on your Shares as determined by the Board
The share offer’s primary aim is not receiving interest on an investment, but is about helping to build a sustainable community. There is limited financial reward. This is a long term investment with interest paid annually. The shares cannot go up in value. If Members wish to withdraw shares at any point they can only be withdrawn at face value. While provision will be made to cover reasonable withdrawal, it is not guaranteed that Members will be able to withdraw their shares on demand. When the Society is in surplus, HoTTWind@Longley aims to pay interest on the shares at a rate determined by the Directors. HoTTWind@Longley will seek to pay 7.5% per annum interest.
Interest is paid gross and is taxable. Any additional profits after reserves will be gifted to a Community Fund and used for benefit of the local community.
Shares cannot be sold or transferred to another person but can be withdrawn, subject to a limit on total withdrawals, after a period of 5 years. This time period is to ensure the Society has an initial period of financial stability. After 5 years, Members can request to withdraw shares with three months’ notice, subject to Board approval. The Directors have the right to refuse or suspend withdrawals, for example if the business does not have sufficient cash for the total requested.
In the event that HoTTWind@Longley is wound up, if its assets exceed the value of the share capital, the Members will only get back the original value of their shares. Any excess value would be transferred to another community organisation with similar community benefit aims. This is known as an ‘asset lock’ and is to prevent private gain if the organisation dissolves. Members will have no liability beyond the value of the shares they purchase.
Member tax relief
HoTTWind@Longley has obtained advance approval from the HMRC for Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) tax relief on Members shareholdings.
EIS Income Tax relief example
Janet is a qualifying tax payer who has invested £10,000 in EIS qualifying community shares. The EIS relief available is £3,000 (£10,000 at 30%). If her income tax liability for the year (before EIS tax relief) was, for example £10,000, she could reduce it to £7,000 as a result of her share subscription. For further information see HMRC website here
This scheme allows Members who are UK taxpayers to apply for income tax relief worth up to 30% of the value of their allocated subscription from the current Main share offering. HoTTWind@Longley will issue a tax certificate to support the claim. To qualify the shares must be held by a Member for a minimum of 3 years from the start of electricity production. If, on withdrawal of shares they are worth less than the amount paid, the loss can be set against income for tax purposes. The scheme also allows for Capital Gains Tax relief. The Directors note that from April 2015 onwards, the UK government is restricting the eligibility of EIS for energy schemes supported by FiTs but is expanding the Social Investment Tax Relief (SITR) scheme to cover community energy schemes at the same time. Details of this expansion of the SITR scheme are not yet finalised, but are expected to be similar to the EIS in terms of relief. It is highly likely, however, that this share offer will have closed by the time that the Government has secured the necessary State Aid clearances and legislation changes required to implement the transfer to SITR. We therefore expect that members’ investments will fall within the current EIS scheme rules.
If the Wind Turbine Project does not go ahead as a community energy scheme, the subscribers to this Main share offer will have their money returned.