Florida lawmakers pass bill to eliminate property taxes on solar panels

Dive Brief:

  • Both the Florida Senate and House have voted unanimously in favor of a measure to strike property taxes on solar panels installed at commercial and industrial facilities.
  • The legislation, SB 90, implements a decision voters made last summer on the question. The ballot initiative passed with almost 75% of the vote in August.
  • The bill now heads to Gov. Rick Scott (R), and clean energy advocates are calling on the governor to sign the measure quickly.

Dive Insight:

After briefly bouncing between the House and Senate, lawmakers approved a bill aimed at expanding carbon free energy and creating green jobs by eliminating taxes on solar arrays installed at C&I sites. 

“Florida has long been a market ripe for advanced energy growth, and Amendment 4 showed that advanced energy growth is what the voters want,” Maria Robinson, associate director of energy policy and analysis for Advanced Energy Economy, said in a statement.

Solar growth is increasingly seen by Florida residents as a way to expand clean energy jobs in the state. According to data from The Solar Foundation, Florida saw solar employment gain 1,700 positions last year, growth of about 25%. The state's solar industry now employs more than 8,200 people.

Amendment 4 had broad support and was uncontroversial compared with another solar issue Florida voters tackled last year. Voters rejected a measure supported by utilities and widely-seen as potentially slowing growth of the state's solar industry. That measure, Amendment 1, would have ensured that third-party ownership of distributed solar remained illegal.

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Filed Under: Solar & Renewables
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