Los Angeles Revives Solar Incentive Program

Officials in Los Angeles will start accepting applications for its revived solar incentives program at the beginning of September. The governing board of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) — the largest municipal utility in the United States — agreed to double the budget for its the solar incentives program.

As we reported in July, the LADWP had to put the inventives on hold because the agency didn’t have enough money to pay for the flood of rebate applications it received, but it was looking to relaunch the program. That freeze had begun in April with applicants asking for three times as much money as was budgeted for the program.

Los_Angeles_Skyline

image via Public Domain Photos

California’s “Million Solar Roofs” legislation directs LADWP to spend $313 million on solar-power incentives through 2016. The department said the new incentives are more consistent with existing solar markets, and state alternative energy programs like the California Solar Initiative. LADWP customers will have an opportunity to receive more than the minimum mandated by the state, though, by assigning renewable energy credits earned through the use of solar photovoltaics to the LADWP and, in turn, receiving 40 cents more per watt of solar electricity.

The LADWP’s budget for the program is $60 million this fiscal year. The department plans to use long-term bond financing to pay for an additional $60 million in each of the next two fiscal years to support the program, but it maintains a $40 million limit for new incentive reservations each fiscal year to prevent exceeding its budget.

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