Governor Christie Signs Bill Aimed at Enhancing the State Solar Market
On July 23, 2012, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed Senate Bill No. 1925 ("S1925"), which includes key amendments to the Energy Discount and Energy Competition Act, N.J.S.A. Section 48:3-49, et seq. (the "Amendments"), that target and are aimed at enhancing the state's solar market. In particular, the Amendments ramp up the state's solar energy generation requirements, which should help to address the current supply and demand imbalance in the Solar Renewable Energy Credit ("SREC") market. The Amendments also include a new Board of Public Utilities' review and approval process for solar generation facilities and a new lower Solar Alternative Compliance Payment schedule through 2028, which should help to maintain long-term market stability. The Amendments also authorize a handful of new solar incentive programs, including new incentives for solar energy projects constructed on brownfields, areas of historic fill and properly closed sanitary landfills. S1925 received strong support in the legislature, however, certain industry groups opposed the bill primarily because of its anticipated cost to ratepayers.