An Act To Increase the Availability of Solar and Wind Power
Emergency preamble. Whereas, acts and resolves of the Legislature do not become effective until 90 days after adjournment unless enacted as emergencies; and
Whereas, promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency are significant priorities of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009; and
Whereas, significant funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 will be disbursed to the Public Utilities Commission in the immediate future for energy initiatives, including renewable energy initiatives such as the solar and wind energy rebate program; and
Whereas, in the judgment of the Legislature, these facts create an emergency within the meaning of the Constitution of Maine and require the following legislation as immediately necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health and safety; now, therefore,
Sec. 1. 35-A MRSA §3211-C, sub-§6, as amended by PL 2007, c. 661, Pt. D, §1, is further amended to read:
Sec. 2. Solar and wind energy rebate program; federal stimulus funds; report. The Public Utilities Commission, to the extent allowed, shall apply federal funds received by the commission under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, Public Law 111-5, to increase funding for the solar and wind energy rebate program established in the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 35-A, section 3211-C by $500,000 per year for the 2-year period during which the federal funds are available. In the solar and wind energy rebate program annual report for December 1, 2010 required by Title 35-A, section 3211-C, subsection 5, the commission shall report the results of the funding expansion to the solar and wind energy rebate program made possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and make recommendations regarding future funding of the solar and wind energy rebate program, including, but not limited to, funding level and sources of funds.
Sec. 3. Solar and wind energy rebate program rules; performance standard; payback calculation. The Public Utilities Commission shall amend the rules governing the solar and wind energy rebate program adopted pursuant to the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 35-A, section 3211-C, subsection 4 to:
1. Establish performance standards for solar and wind energy systems. The purpose of the standards must be to inform rebate program applicants about relevant performance criteria and the relative performance of different solar and wind energy systems; and
2. Require each applicant, as part of the application form, to complete a simple payback period calculation for the applicant’s solar or wind energy system. For the purposes of this subsection, "simple payback period" is the estimated amount of time it will take to recover the initial investment through energy savings, determined by dividing the initial installed cost by the estimated annual energy cost savings.
Sec. 4. Appropriations and allocations. The following appropriations and allocations are made.
PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION
Solar Rebate Program Fund Z012
Initiative: Allocates funds to the solar and wind energy rebate program now continued beyond its original sunset date of December 31, 2010 until the new sunset of December 31, 2015.
|OTHER SPECIAL REVENUE FUNDS||2009-10||2010-11|
|OTHER SPECIAL REVENUE FUNDS TOTAL||$0||$250,000|
Solar Rebate Program Fund Z012
Initiative: Allocates American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 funds for 2 years to increase the funding for the solar and wind energy rebate program.
|FEDERAL EXPENDITURES FUND ARRA||2009-10||2010-11|
|FEDERAL EXPENDITURES FUND ARRA TOTAL||$500,000||$500,000|
|PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION|
OTHER SPECIAL REVENUE FUNDS
FEDERAL EXPENDITURES FUND ARRA
|DEPARTMENT TOTAL - ALL FUNDS||$500,000||$750,000|
Emergency clause. In view of the emergency cited in the preamble, this legislation takes effect when approved.