2017 is proving to be another eventful year for clean energy legislation in Sacramento, with many elected officials eager to show state leadership in an era where the federal outlook is uncertain at best. Soon, California’s Legislature heads home for a summer recess, before coming back and sending bills to Governor Brown for signature by September 15. Here’s a roundup of the bills we support and oppose this year, and the current status of each. Exciting, inspiring stuff!
California Bills Vote Solar Supports:
SB 100 (De León)-- Will accelerate the state’s current 50% Renewables Portfolio Program (RPS) requirement to 2025, raise the RPS to 60% in 2030, and establish a goal for the state to satisfy 100% of its electricity needs from carbon-free resources by 2045. That’s right – it’d mean one of the world’s largest economies would be 100% powered with clean energy! Status: Passed out of the Senate earlier this year and Assembly policy committees this week, and has been referred to Assembly Appropriations Committee.
AB 1184 (Ting) – Will create a pathway to achieving the state’s goals of 1.5 million zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) on the road by 2025 and 5 million vehicles ZEV by 2030, by establishing a reliable, long-term incentive program for electric vehicles. As we bring more solar onto California’s grid, EVs can help us match power demand with supply, using all that mid-afternoon sunshine to clean up our air. Status: Passed out of the Assembly earlier this year and Senate policy committees, and has been referred to Senate Appropriations Committee.
SB 520 (Mitchell)— Seeks to allow non-profits a more level playing field at the California Independent System Operator and the Federal Regulatory Energy Commission, by authorizing a new intervenor compensation program that will allow for recovery of advocacy expenses. Status: Passed out of the Senate earlier this year, approved in Assembly policy committee and referred to Assembly Appropriations Committee.
SB 242 (Skinner)-- Will strengthen Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing in California by building upon its existing consumer protections. Status: Passed out of the Senate earlier this year, and now set to be heard in Assembly Banking and Finance Committee on Tuesday July 18.
SB 366 (Leyva)–Aims to make the IOU’s existing community shared renewables programs affordable for low-income customers and get more shared renewables projects built in disadvantaged communities. Has been made into a two-year bill.
SB 71 (Wiener)— Would direct the California Energy Commission to use building codes to require cost-effective rooftop solar to be built into new residential construction. Status: Has been made into a two-year bill.
SB 700 (Wiener)— Seeks to create a well-planned incentive structure for customer-side energy storage, in much in the same way that the California Solar Initiative helped bring down costs for rooftop solar. Status: Has been made into a two-year bill.
California Bills Vote Solar Opposes:
AB 271 (Caballero): This bill would impose regressive changes that would eliminate current consumer protections and fundamentally undermine the PACE program. Status: Passed out of Assembly and Senate Governance & Finance Committee. Is eligible to be heard in the Senate Appropriations Committee when legislature reconvenes from summer recess.