HB 874 was introduced to make Georgia a more friendly solar-state and allow for solar-financing to come to Georgia. The original version of the bill stated that any solar technology used for private consumption may be installed on property owned or occupied by an electric customer. The language undermined private property rights by allowing “occupants” to install solar panels, regardless of ownership rights. The bill also undermined the rights of Condo and Homeowner Associations to restrict the use of solar panels in their communities, allowing the state to override private contracts. GAR worked with the sponsor of HB 874 to amend language in the Solar Panel Bill that intentionally undermined private property owner’s rights.
The bill’s sponsor indicated it was not his intent to undermine private property rights and he worked with Georgia REALTORS® to address the REALTOR® concerns. We were able to remove the language we were concerned about and negotiate new language that has been included in the bill to specifically ensure that this bill will not impose on existing private property rights. This legislation was included in Georgia REALTOR® Talking Points for Legislative Day at the Capitol. This is a great example of the impact we have when REALTORS® attend Legislative Day and build relationships with our legislators. In working with the Representative who introduced the bill, we were able to clear up any unintended consequences to private property rights.