As one of the final acts of the 2013 legislative session, on May 17th the Missouri legislature approved an amendment that will phase-out the Missouri solar rebate between 2014 and 2020. The approved amendment was based largely upon similar legislation that was supported by the Missouri solar industry trade group, MOSEIA, as well as the Missouri public utilities.
As background, pursuant to Proposition C, the voter intiative implementing Missouri’s Renewable Energy Standard, the state’s public utilities provide a rebate of $2.00 per watt for new or expanded solar systems on customers’ premises, up to a maximum of 25 kW per system (for a maximum total rebate of $50,000 per system), subject to a 1% annual cost cap for the utilities.
This rebate has been viewed as extremely effective in encouraging the development of the Missouri solar industry over the last few years. In light of this success, going into the 2013 legislative session both the solar industry and the public utilities believed that it was necessary to begin planning for the phase-out of the incentive over the next few years. To this end, a number of bills were introduced setting forth proposed phase-out schedules ranging from 4 to 6 years. Though none of the stand-alone bills garnered enough support to pass both chambers prior to the session end on Friday, an amendment to an existing utilities bill which included the phase-out language was successfully proposed and passed on the final day of the session.
As passed, the amendment sets forth the following phase-out schedule for the solar rebate:
- $2.00/watt before June 30, 2014;
- $1.50/watt between July 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015;
- $1.00/watt between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016;
- $0.50/watt between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2019; and
- $0.25/watt between July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020.
In addition to the phase-out, there are a number of other provisions included in the amendment that could potentially impact the Missouri solar industry and the public. If you have any questions about the solar rebate, this legislation, or the potential impacts on the solar industry or your company, please feel free to leave a comment or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or (913)234-7416.