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March 2, 2012 Published in EcoNews, From Richmond

House Of Delegates Votes To Set Solar Free: Bill Heads To Governor’s Desk

Yesterday, the House of Delegates, in a bipartisan vote, passed Senator Chap Petersen's bill (SB627) to allow homeowners the freedom to use solar panels to power their homes without the threat of litigation by homeowner associations.

Senator Petersen (D-Fairfax City) expressed satisfaction that finally, Virginians will be able to use solar panels regardless of where they live, or under what homeowner association rules they are subject to:

"The passage of SB627 is the result of a multi-year effort to allow all Virginians to take advantage of clean solar energy. This is a bipartisan bill that will bring high-paying, skilled solar panel installation and manufacturing jobs to Virginia. I am pleased to have worked with a number of Senators and Delegates from both parties to pass this bill, and I am very pleased that we could all come together to pass this common sense bill."

Delegate David Ramadan (R-Loudoun) praised Senator Petersen's bill, and defended it on the House floor:

"I commend Senator Petersen for bringing this bill through, and I was happy to present and defend it on the house floor. This is a private property issue for homeowners, and it’s a matter of choice so that people can pick what sources of energy are useful for them."

SB627 will allow Home Owner Associations (HOAs) to regulate placement and size of solar panels, but will not allow HOAs to have an outright ban on solar panels.


The House of Delegates voted 74-24 to pass the bill

The Senate voted 31-8 to pass the bill.

The bill now heads to the Governor's desk for consideration.

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