The solar bill that's been talked about for weeks has finally appeared in the Georgia legislature: HB 657. It's better than I expected, because it's about rural solar generation and distribution. However, there is a catch: a "community solar provider" must be certified by the Public Service Commission, instead of just setting up in business as in most states, and the PSC could certify only one state-wide monopoly; note the summary at the front says "an independent community solar provider" as in only one. But the body of the bill is more circumspect and says "any". Perhaps if we get enough installations the benefits of solar will become obvious enough that the PSC will certify a lot of community solar providers, and we can get on with solar in Georgia, including house and business rooftop solar. Many thanks to Representatives Kidd of the 145th, Kirby of the 114th, Rogers of the 10th, Brockway of the 102nd, Fullerton of the 153rd, and others. And special credit to Robert E. Green, Shane Owl-Greason, and Ted Terry of Georgia Solar Utilities (GaSU) for shepherding this bill into the legislature.
Shane Owl-Greason, Ted Terry, Robert E. Green at the Dublin High School solar groundbreaking.
The bill requires the PSC to study changes in retail rates because of this bill. Too bad it doesn't go the rest of the way to what North Carolina did, and require timely public posting of who buys and sells which types of energy at which prices, but at least it's a start.
Maybe HB 657 will help get HB 503 passed for Renewable Portfolio Standards. However, HB 657 is cleaner than either HB 503 or SB 51 because it does not mess around with biomass or for that matter any other energy source: HB 657 is about solar energy and nothing else.
The main part of HB 657 is in Section 1, but first here's how it shoehorns