CA’s Million Solar Roofs Bill Re-referred to Committee

In what appears to be a last ditch effort to save SB-1 and at the same time save political face, members of the California assembly re-referred the solar bill to the Utilities and Commerce Committee for the wrangling over final language.

California lawmakers appear to be stuck in a high stakes game of political poker that could end up costing the solar industry dearly. While supporters of the bill are still hopeful that the issues will be resolved and the bill be voted on by Friday (September 9th is the last day of the legislative session and the deadline for passing the Million Solar Roofs bill), it is also possible that SB1 will not re-emerge from the committee. The most controversial of the remaining issues are two labor provisions that were attached to the bill in the Assembly Appropriations Committee on August 25th. The first requires prevailing wages be paid on all commercial solar installations, while the second would eliminate half of all existing solar contractors by requiring only certified electricians do the bulk of the installations. State labor unions are split over these two amendments with Laborers and Carpenters on one side, in opposition of the amendments, and International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and State Building Trades Council on the other, in favor of the amendments. If SB1 does re-emerge for the Septebmer 9 vote, the bill will return to the Assembly Floor for a full vote and, if passed, will head to the Senate for concurrence before being put on the Governor’s desk for his signature, his veto or, through inaction, to become law by default.


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