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09.22.2020 Legal News

Virginia SCC Issues Proposed Shared Solar Regulations for Comment

On September 21, 2020, the Virginia State Corporation Commission (the “Commission”) issued an Order for Notice and Comment (the “Order”) relating to proposed rules (the “Proposed Rules”) to govern development of shared solar facilities and participation in the shared solar program.

As background, during the 2020 session, the Virginia General Assembly enacted Chapters 1238 (HB 1634) and 1264 (SB 629) of the 2020 Virginia Acts of Assembly. Section 56-594.3 of the Virginia Code, which was added pursuant to the 2020 Virginia Acts of Assembly, requires the Commission to establish by regulation a shared solar program by January 1, 2021 that allows customers of Virginia Electric and Power Company (Dominion) to purchase electric power through a subscription in a shared solar facility. Under the new legislation, the Commission is to approve a shared solar program of 150 MWs with a minimum requirement of 30% low income customers.

On July 1, 2020, the Commission established a rulemaking proceeding and requested comments on several questions relating to the shared solar program and associated regulations. In response, several parties filed comments and Dominion, the Coalition for Community Solar Access and the Maryland-DC-Delaware-Virginia Solar Energy Industries Association filed proposed regulations.

Pursuant to its recent Order, the Commission proposed the Proposed Rules, which are available here. Any interested person may file comments on the Proposed Rules with the Commission on or before November 2, 2020. Commission staff is to file a report with the Clerk of the Commission on, or a response to, any comments, proposals, or requests for hearing on or before November 16, 2020.

If you have any questions concerning the Proposed Rules or the shared solar program, please contact Brad Nowak, co-chair of Williams Mullen’s Solar & Energy Storage Team.