Sonoma County Completes its First Project Using AB 811

Last week, the Sonoma County Energy Independence Program (SCEIP) celebrated the completion of the first energy project and financial award in its history. From application to payout, the entire process took less than six weeks (see Solar in Santa Rosa/Solar Sonoma County: It’s a countywide affair, IREC website, 4.21.09)

SCEIP was made possible by California Assembly Bill (AB) 811, whereby local governments can finance property improvements for renewable energy, and energy or water conservation upgrades. SCEIP provides financing for the improvements, and the property owners repay the program over time through their property tax bill. The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors approved SCEIP on March 25th.

The homeowners, Ann and Deke DeKay, applied for SCEIP funding on on the very first day, and, according to the SCEIP press release, they were first to complete an assessment contract, and they were also the first to complete their energy project.

The 5 kilowatt PV system will generate an average of 35 kilowatt hours per day. Any excess power will be credited to the DeKay’s at $0.29/kWh.

The system cost was slighly over $40,000. The cost was offset by a California Solar Initiative rebate of about $8,200, and a dollar-for-dollar federal tax credit of about 30% of the after rebate cost, bringing the final cost of the SCEIP-funded system to $25,500 financed for 20 years with twice yearly payments at 7% simple interest by SCEIP, according to Sonoma County’s John Haig.

As of May 12th, SCEIP has received applications for almost $6 million in energy improvements. Eight of the nine cities in Sonoma County have formally adopted SCEIP, which will enable their residents to participate in the program. The ninth city, Petaluma, is expected to adopt SCEIP on May 18th. SCEIP is the first county level AB 811 program in California, and with $100 million pledged for financing, it is also the largest.

Thanks to Marty Roberts, Project Director, Solar Sonoma County, for sending this news along.

Source: County of Sonoma press release

May 13, 2009
Contact: Jim Toomey
(707) 565-2188


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