AB 634 (Eggman). Real property: solar energy systems.

solar

If an architectural application for rooftop solar installation requires a vote of the membership for approval, only the percentage of the votes submitted shall be counted. Failure to submit a vote shall not be counted as a “no” vote.

Current Status: Pending

FindHOALaw Quick Summary:

Existing law prohibits any provision of the governing documents from effectively prohibiting or restricting the installation or use of a solar energy system.  However, associations may impose reasonable restrictions that do not significantly increase the cost of the system, or significantly decrease its performance.  Whenever approval is required for the installation of a solar energy system, the application must be processed and approved in the same manner as an architectural modification.  The approval or denial of the application must be in writing, and if not denied in writing within 45 days of its receipt, the application must be deemed approved.

This bill would amend Civil Code Section 714 to require that the approval process include a requirement that an applicant notify each owner of units within the building on which the solar panels are to be installed of the application and to ensure equal allocation of usable solar space.  This bill would also amend Civil Code Section 714.1 to specify that an association may not prohibit the installation of a solar energy system on the common area roof of the building in which the owner resides, and may not require approval of the membership in those circumstances.

**UPDATE: On May 4, 2017, the proposed text of AB 634 was amended to specify that an association may not establish a policy prohibiting the installation of solar panels on a common area roof, and to exempt the installation of solar panels on a common area roof from the vote requirement for granting of exclusive use common area:

(5) Require an applicant to notify each owner of a unit in the building on which the installation will be located of the application to install a solar energy system.
(6) Require the applicant to submit to the association a solar suitability survey prepared by a licensed contractor knowledgeable in the installation of solar energy systems, for the association to determine usable solar roof area.
(7) Require equitable allocation of the usable solar roof area among all owners sharing the same roof, if the association determines that the roof is suitable for solar installation pursuant to paragraph (6).
(b) An association shall not:
(1) Prohibit Establish a general policy prohibiting the installation or use of a rooftop solar energy system for household purposes on the roof of the building in which the owner resides.
(2) Require approval of the membership of the association, by a vote of members owning separate interests in the common interest development, including that specified by Section 4600, for installation of a solar energy system for household purposes on the roof of the building in which the owner resides.

To read the current text of AB 634, click here to the view the bill’s page on the California Legislature’s website. FindHOALaw will continue to track AB 634 as it progresses through the Legislature. 

Share:

View more info on AB 634
from the California Legislature's website