Northern Rough-winged Swallow.
Northern Rough-winged Swallow.
Advocacy

SB145: The Solar Access Act of 2019

Northern Rough-winged Swallow. Photo: Photo: Doris Dumrauf/Alamy
Northern Rough-winged Swallow. Photo: Photo: Doris Dumrauf/Alamy
Advocacy

SB145: The Solar Access Act of 2019

SB 145 was a tremendous bi-partisan success that will remove major regulatory barriers that have slowed Arkansass solar market for years. Specifically this Act will:

      Enable solar leasing and third-party purchasing for non-taxed entities which allows greater flexibility for customers

      More than triple the maximum solar size limit for businesses – enabling them to better capture economies of scale

      Adds a grandfathering provision to provide market certainty so that customers who adopt solar are protected from future rate structure changes that would decrease the value of their investment 

Supporters for Solar Access SB 145

Corporations:

  • Mars
  • Target 
  • Unilever
  • Walmart

Small Businesses:

  • Add Sum Balloons, LLC
  • Apple Blossom
  • Arkansas Citizens First Congress
  • Arkansas Interfaith Power & Light
  • Asphalt Stripping Service, LLC
  • Box Turtle
  • Community Bakery
  • Core Brewing Co.
  • Custom Trophies
  • Damgoode Pies
  • Dickson Street Bookshop
  • Dickson Street Liquor
  • Dog Party USA
  • Dos Rocas Beer & Tacos
  • El Sol Mexican Restaurant
  • Electric Ghost
  • Fayettechill
  • French Metro Antiques
  • Gearhead Outfitters
  • Hall N Ash
  • Hillcrest Gallery
  • Loblolly Creamery
  • Luxe
  • Moxy Modern Mercantile
  • Mylo Coffee Company
  • Penguin Ed's
  • Petra Cafe
  • Phantom Palm
  • Reinvented Vintage
  • Root Cafe
  • Something Urban
  • Stone Mill Bread
  • Studio 3
  • The Green Corner Store
  • The Meteor
  • The Mustache Goods & Wears
  • Tread Light Electric, LLC
  • Wedington Animal Hospital
  • Wilson Enterprises

Nonprofits and Associations:

  • Audubon Arkansas

  • Arkansas River Valley Audubon Society

  • Audubon Society of Central Arkansas

  • Audubon Society of North Central Arkansas

  • Garland County Audubon Society

  • Hot Springs Village Audubon Society

  • Northwest Arkansas Audubon Society

  • Arkansas Advanced Energy Association (AAEA)

  • Arkansas Citizens First Congress

  • Arkansas Interfaith Power and Light

  • Arkansas Sierra Club

  • Arkansas Chapter of the Associated General Contractors of America, Inc. 

  • County Judges Association of Arkansas

  • University of Arkansas- Young Democrats

  • University of Arkansas- Little Rock Young Democrats

Local Government:

  • Pulaski County

  • City of Fayetteville

Issue Background/The Problem

This legislation would be designed to remove Arkansas’s ban on solar leasing and power purchase arrangements, collectively known as 3rd party financing. Arkansas is one of only a handful of states that do not allow for individual choice in how they finance their renewable generation. This regulatory burden is causing Arkansas to miss out on a large chunk of the solar market. More than 40% of all distributed solar installed in the US to date has utilized some form of 3rd party financing arrangement.

Arkansas is not taking full advantage of the current solar boom, because our state’s policies have not kept up. Without access to 3rd Party Ownership (TPO) finance structures many willing solar adopters are kept out of the market: including county and city governments, non-profits, churches, schools, Universities, and any other consumers who would prefer to lease solar rather than own it.

By failing to reach our potential in the solar arena Arkansas is missing out on thousands of good paying jobs, millions in private investment, and cleaner air and water from a more renewable fuel mix.

SB145 Media Coverage

"Major Step Forward, Solar Access Act Passed the Full Senate, Audubon Arkansas Urges House to do the Same" by Gary Moody, Audubon Arkansas

"Bill aims to rev up solar power in state" by Hunter Field, Arkansas Democrat Gazette

"Solar Advocates, Audubon Trumpet Bill to Let Nonprofits Reap Savings" by Kyle Massey, Arkansas Business

"Solar Energy to Potentially Become More Accessible" by Hicham Raache, FOX24

"Coming Out of the Dark Ages" by Becky Gillette, Eureka Springs Independent 

"A Champion of Solar Rises in South: Ouachita Electric" by Kyle Massey, Arkansas Business

"Let Arkansas Shine: State's policies can do better for solar energy" by Fran Alexander, Arkansas Democrat Gazette

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