Yes, the Washington State Legislature passed the solar jobs bill, much to our relief! We thank all those constituents and legislators and Brad Boswell at Boswell Consulting for contributing mightily to this victory. There will be some work to do to implement the legislation, and not all of the provisions of the bill are to our liking, so revisiting some things in a future session is possible.
The passage of this bill is timely; funding limits have been reached in quite a few utility districts and many have chosen to close their incentive programs. We will still face challenges in those districts and in two years the federal tax credit program is set to be reduced, and the incentives offered by the state program get smaller each year for new participants.Kara Carlson’s article in the Sunday July 2nd Seattle Times highlights some of those difficulties, but at the same time shows how far we’ve come in just a few years. Let’s hope that the revival of our state program represents a trend toward sensible policy that doesn’t go too far, but far enough to keep us on the path to a renewable future.