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We’ve got our first solar bill!

creepy-baby-sunFraser’s solar bill, SB 545, just passed out of the Senate floor with a vote of 26 to 4.

SB 545 will:

  • Build our emerging renewable technologies
  • Create jobs
  • Lower electric costs in the long term
  • Reduce pollution
  • Assure fair prices for excess electricity generated by distributive renewable energy sources; and
  • Allow new home buyers to have a solar option.

More specifically, the bill provides $500 million over the next 5 years in solar incentives.  The PUC will also have an option of extending the program.

A few good amendments also got tacked on at the 11th hour, so now the bill also contains:

  • net metering language, so that folks with solar panels on their homes will be able to sell power back into the grid at a fair rate
  • an amendment so that Home Owner’s Associations won’t be able to prevent people from putting solar panels on their homes unless the HOA can prove it is dangerous
  • a website requirement so that PUC will have to provide information to the public on solar incentives and subsidies available
  • a requirement that electrical coops and munis have to adopt a similar solar program and report back to the lege in 3 years to prove they’ve done their homework

Now all we need to get solar panels on your house… is to get a companion bill through the House :)