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Washington State Legislature passes Solar Bill, protecting homeowner incentives and local solar jobs

posted Jul 5, 2017, 11:34 AM by RE Sources for Sustainable Communities   [ updated Jul 7, 2017, 10:26 AM ]
By Bonnie Frye Hemphill Legislative Liaison, Solar Installers of Washington

solarstrongwa.com

You did it. Thanks to your hard work, the Legislature has passed the solar bill. The bill earned bipartisan support, with 85% of legislators voting in favor — an amazing tally.

And we didn’t just pass a bill. Together, we built a community of 10,000 people passionate about clean energy and energy independence. We teamed solar home- and business-owners with environmental activists, entrepreneurs, utilities, faith leaders, union leaders, low-income advocates, credit unions, and manufacturers. We earned the respect of Republicans and Democrats alike in Olympia.

This accomplishment:
  • Defends current solar owners from further erosion of your production incentives.
  • Creates a new, right-sized program for new solar owners in WA.
  • Saves the thousands of solar jobs we already have, and creates the legislative certainty for solar to grow by leaps and bounds.
The Solar Jobs Bill was always a long shot. But you didn’t give up. You kept calling your legislators to share your solar stories. You kept spreading the word on social media, and showing up for meetings with legislators. You made Solar Lobby Day a standing-room only summit in Olympia. Together, we made the long shot.

It's a new day for solar in Washington. Onward, together. Learn more online at solarstrongwa.com.


What's new in the solar bill?

The new solar bill is good news for current and future solar owners in Washington. But what are the details?

Check out an overview of the bill for both current and future solar owners. The goals include:
  • Stimulate further local investment in renewable energy.
  • Ensure the program’s cost-effectiveness.
  • Prevent further erosion of production incentives for existing solar owners enrolled in the legacy solar program.
  • Ensure simplicity and certainty for new solar owners.
  • Create opportunities for low-income households to access savings via Community Solar balanced among utilities, nonprofits, and housing authorities.