Florida Solar Policy & Licensing
The Florida Legislature and the Construction Industry Licensing Board (CILB) have established the scope of work for solar contractors. For the full text of the Florida Legislatures rules on solar energy contractors licensing and requirements you can read the following Rules and Chapters here, Click here for Chapter 489, Part I (Solar contractor definition is section 489.105 (3) (o).
Florida has licensing requirements for all solar contractors. The state certification (licensure) for solar contractors is required by anyone who installs, alters, repairs, maintains, relocates or replaces any type of solar thermal or PV systems. Individuals employed by the contractor are not required to be licensed.
Learn more on How to Obtain a Solar License
To verify a contractor’s license, go to www.myfloridalicense.com and type the license number listed on the proposal, business cards and marketing material of the contractor you are interviewing.
All of FlaSEIA’s contractor members are required to hold an active contractors license. However, if you would like to verify a contractors license who is not a member of FlaSEIA you can do so easily.
Florida Energy Policy
FlaSEIA is instrumental in providing political and grass roots education in support of growing Florida’s solar energy economy. From the White House to the out house 86% of Americans support the growth of solar energy in all forms. On a political front, FlaSEIA strives to provide elected officials and candidates the best information so they are able to make educated and informed decisions regarding solar energy in Florida. On the national stage FlaSEIA also supports the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).
Key Policy Initiatives supported by FlaSEIA are Distributed Generation or Rooftop Solar and the following policies and programs that help consumers go solar:
- Net Metering or Net Energy Meter (NEM)
- Rate Design
- Interconnection Standards
- Local Permitting
- Financing Options
FlaSEIA also supports the growth of Utility Scale Solar and the critical issues for developing solar power on the largest scale in a distributed form, these items include:
- Renewable Portfolio Standards & other accepted measurement standards
- Grid Interconnection
- Wholesale Distributed Generation (non-utility owned, utility scale projects)
FlaSEIA recognizes not all individuals are able to install solar panels, not just for monetary reasons but regarding site availability, such as condos or heavily shaded areas. That is why we are continually working to advance community solar or shared renewables in the state of Florida.
As a contractor or business owner in the industry your help is needed; we offer a variety of levels of financial and community support. You can become a member or simply join our mailing list so you can stay informed. When we launch a campaign you can help the solar industry to advance Florida’s solar energy policy forward.
The Florida Solar Rights Act
Florida law forbids any entity—including homeowner associations—from prohibiting the installation of solar or other renewable energy devices on Florida buildings. An association may require approval of a system installation, and may establish restrictions for installations. However, any such restrictions must be reasonable, not arbitrary, and applied in a uniform manner for all association members. Also, any restrictions must not have the effect of impairing the performance, or increasing the cost, of a solar system.
In particular, a homeowner association may not prevent the installation of solar collectors on the roof of a home. The association may determine where on the roof the collectors may be installed, so long as the collectors face within 45 degrees of due south.
Finally, any requirement(s) that a system be screened from view by trees, fences, ground mounting racks, or a remote roof location that is hidden from the street, will generally violate the statute.
Florida Home Owners Solar Rights Act
163.04 Energy devices based on renewable resources.–
1) Notwithstanding any provision of this chapter or other provision of general or special law, the adoption of an ordinance by a governing body, as those terms are defined in this chapter, which prohibits or has the effect of prohibiting the installation of solar collectors, clotheslines, or other energy devices based on renewable resources is expressly prohibited.
(2) No deed restrictions, covenants, or similar binding agreements running with the land shall prohibit or have the effect of prohibiting solar collectors, clotheslines, or other energy devices based on renewable resources from being installed on buildings erected on the lots or parcels covered by the deed restrictions, covenants, or binding agreements. A property owner may not be denied permission to install solar collectors or other energy devices based on renewable resources by any entity granted the power or right in any deed restriction, covenant, or similar binding agreement to approve, forbid, control, or direct alteration of property with respect to residential dwellings not exceeding three stories in height. For purposes of this subsection, such entity may determine the specific location where solar collectors may be installed on the roof within an orientation to the south or within 45 degrees east or west of due south provided that such determination does not impair the effective operation of the solar collectors.
(3) In any litigation arising under the provisions of this section, the prevailing party shall be entitled to costs and reasonable attorney’s fees.
(4) The legislative intent in enacting these provisions is to protect the public health, safety, and welfare by encouraging the development and use of renewable resources in order to conserve and protect the value of land, buildings, and resources by preventing the adoption of measures which will have the ultimate effect, however unintended, of driving the costs of owning and operating commercial or residential property beyond the capacity of private owners to maintain. This section shall not apply to patio railings in condominiums, cooperatives, or apartments.
History.–s. 8, ch. 80-163; s. 1, ch. 92-89; s. 14, ch. 93-249.
Other Solar Laws in Florida
SOLAR ENERGY USE IN SCHOOLS (Section 1013.44, Florida Statute)
1013.44 Low-energy use design; solar energy systems; swimming pool heaters.–
(1)(a) Passive design elements and low-energy usage features shall be included in the design and construction of new educational facilities. Operable glazing consisting of at least 5 percent of the floor area shall be placed in each classroom located on the perimeter of the building. For a relocatable classroom, the area of operable glazing and the area of exterior doors, together, shall consist of at least 5 percent of the floor area. Operable glazing is not required in community colleges, auxiliary facilities, music rooms, gyms, locker and shower rooms, special laboratories requiring special climate control, and large group instruction areas having a capacity of more than 100 persons.
(b) In the remodeling and renovation of educational facilities which have existing natural ventilation, adequate sources of natural ventilation shall be retained, or a combination of natural and low-energy usage mechanical equipment shall be provided that will permit the use of the facility without air-conditioning or heat when ambient conditions are moderate. However, the Commissioner of Education is authorized to waive this requirement when environmental conditions, particularly noise and pollution factors, preclude the effective use of natural ventilation.
(2) Each new educational facility for which the projected demand for hot water exceeds 1,000 gallons a day shall be constructed, whenever economically and physically feasible, with a solar energy system as the primary energy source for the domestic hot water system of the facility. The solar energy system shall be sized so as to provide at least 65 percent of the estimated needs of the facility. Sizing shall be determined by generally recognized simulation models, such as F-chart and SOLCOST, or by sizing tables generated by the Florida Solar Energy Center.
(3) If swimming and wading pools constructed as an integral part of an educational facility or plant are heated, such pools shall, whenever feasible, be heated by either a waste heat recovery system or a solar energy system.
RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION WITH REGARD TO ENERGY, INCLUDING SOLAR ENERGY (Section 377.703-704, Florida Statute)
377.703 Additional functions of the Department of Environmental Protection; energy emergency contingency plan; federal and state conservation programs.–
(1) LEGISLATIVE INTENT.–Recognizing that energy supply and demand questions have become a major area of concern to the state which must be dealt with by effective and well-coordinated state action, it is the intent of the Legislature to promote the efficient, effective, and economical management of energy problems, centralize energy coordination responsibilities, pinpoint responsibility for conducting energy programs, and ensure the accountability of state agencies for the implementation of s. 377.601(4), the state energy policy. It is the specific intent of the Legislature that nothing in this act shall in any way change the powers, duties, and responsibilities assigned by the Florida Electrical Power Plant Siting Act, part II of chapter 403, or the powers, duties, and responsibilities of the Florida Public Service Commission.
(a) “Coordinate,” “coordination,” or “coordinating” means the examination and evaluation of state plans and programs and the providing of recommendations to the Cabinet, Legislature, and appropriate state agency on any measures deemed necessary to ensure that such plans and programs are consistent with state energy policy.
(b) “Energy conservation” means increased efficiency in the utilization of energy.
(c) “Energy emergency” means an actual or impending shortage or curtailment of usable, necessary energy resources, such that the maintenance of necessary services, the protection of public health, safety, and welfare, or the maintenance of basic sound economy is imperiled in any geographical section of the state or throughout the entire state.
(d) “Energy source” means electricity, fossil fuels, solar power, wind power, hydroelectric power, nuclear power, or any other resource which has the capacity to do work.
(e) “Facilities” means any building or structure not otherwise exempted by the provisions of this act.
(f) “Fuel” means petroleum, crude oil, petroleum product, coal, natural gas, or any other substance used primarily for its energy content.
(g) “Local government” means any county, municipality, regional planning agency, or other special district or local governmental entity the policies or programs of which may affect the supply or demand, or both, for energy in the state.
(h) “Promotion” or “promote” means to encourage, aid, assist, provide technical and financial assistance, or otherwise seek to plan, develop, and expand.
(i) “Regional planning agency” means those agencies designated as regional planning agencies by the Department of Community Affairs.
(j) “Renewable energy resource” means any method, process, or substance the use of which does not diminish its availability or abundance, including, but not limited to, biomass conversion, geothermal energy, solar energy, wind energy, wood fuels derived from waste, ocean thermal gradient power, hydroelectric power, and fuels derived from agricultural products.
(3) DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION; DUTIES.–The Department of Environmental Protection shall, in addition to assuming the duties and responsibilities provided by ss. 20.255 and 377.701, perform the following functions consistent with the development of a state energy policy:
(a) The department shall assume the responsibility for development of an energy emergency contingency plan to respond to serious shortages of primary and secondary energy sources. Upon a finding by the Governor, implementation of any emergency program shall be upon order of the Governor that a particular kind or type of fuel is, or that the occurrence of an event which is reasonably expected within 30 days will make the fuel, in short supply. The department shall then respond by instituting the appropriate measures of the contingency plan to meet the given emergency or energy shortage. The Governor may utilize the provisions of s. 252.36(5) to carry out any emergency actions required by a serious shortage of energy sources.
(b) The department shall constitute the responsible state agency for performing or coordinating the functions of any federal energy programs delegated to the state, including energy supply, demand, conservation, or allocation.
(c) The department shall analyze present and proposed federal energy programs and make recommendations regarding those programs to the Governor.
(d) The department shall coordinate efforts to seek federal support or other support for state energy activities, including energy conservation, research, or development, and shall be the state agency responsible for the coordination of multiagency energy conservation programs and plans.
(e) The department shall analyze energy data collected and prepare long-range forecasts of energy supply and demand in coordination with the Florida Public Service Commission, which shall have responsibility for electricity and natural gas forecasts. To this end, the forecasts shall contain:
1. An analysis of the relationship of state economic growth and development to energy supply and demand, including the constraints to economic growth resulting from energy supply constraints.
2. Plans for the development of renewable energy resources and reduction in dependence on depletable energy resources, particularly oil and natural gas, and an analysis of the extent to which renewable energy sources are being utilized in the state.
3. Consideration of alternative scenarios of statewide energy supply and demand for 5, 10, and 20 years, to identify strategies for long-range action, including identification of potential social, economic, and environmental effects.
4. An assessment of the state’s energy resources, including examination of the availability of commercially developable and imported fuels, and an analysis of anticipated effects on the state’s environment and social services resulting from energy resource development activities or from energy supply constraints, or both.
(f) The department shall make a report, as requested by the Governor or the Legislature, reflecting its activities and making recommendations of policies for improvement of the state’s response to energy supply and demand and its effect on the health, safety, and welfare of the people of Florida. The report shall include a report from the Florida Public Service Commission on electricity and natural gas and information on energy conservation programs conducted and under way in the past year and shall include recommendations for energy conservation programs for the state, including, but not limited to, the following factors:
1. Formulation of specific recommendations for improvement in the efficiency of energy utilization in governmental, residential, commercial, industrial, and transportation sectors.
2. Collection and dissemination of information relating to energy conservation.
3. Development and conduct of educational and training programs relating to energy conservation.
4. An analysis of the ways in which state agencies are seeking to implement s. 377.601(4), the state energy policy, and recommendations for better fulfilling this policy.
(g) The department has authority to adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to implement the provisions of this act.
(h) Promote the development and use of renewable energy resources, in conformance with the provisions of chapter 187 and s. 377.601, by:
1. Establishing goals and strategies for increasing the use of solar energy in this state.
2. Aiding and promoting the commercialization of solar energy technology, in cooperation with the Florida Solar Energy Center, Enterprise Florida, Inc., and any other federal, state, or local governmental agency which may seek to promote research, development, and demonstration of solar energy equipment and technology.
3. Identifying barriers to greater use of solar energy systems in this state, and developing specific recommendations for overcoming identified barriers, with findings and recommendations to be submitted annually in the report to the Legislature required under paragraph (f).
4. In cooperation with the Department of Transportation, the Department of Community Affairs, Enterprise Florida, Inc., the Florida Solar Energy Center, and the Florida Solar Energy Industries Association, investigating opportunities, pursuant to the National Energy Policy Act of 1992 and the Housing and Community Development Act of 1992, for solar electric vehicles and other solar energy manufacturing, distribution, installation, and financing efforts which will enhance this state’s position as the leader in solar energy research, development, and use.
5. Undertaking other initiatives to advance the development and use of renewable energy resources in this state. In the exercise of its responsibilities under this paragraph, the department shall seek the assistance of the solar energy industry in this state and other interested parties and is authorized to enter into contracts, retain professional consulting services, and expend funds appropriated by the Legislature for such purposes.
(i) The department shall promote energy conservation in all energy use sectors throughout the state and shall constitute the state agency primarily responsible for this function. To this end, the department shall coordinate the energy conservation programs of all state agencies and review and comment on the energy conservation programs of all state agencies.
(j) The department shall serve as the state clearinghouse for indexing and gathering all information related to energy programs in state universities, in private universities, in federal, state, and local government agencies, and in private industry and shall prepare and distribute such information in any manner necessary to inform and advise the citizens of the state of such programs and activities. This shall include developing and maintaining a current index and profile of all research activities, which shall be identified by energy area and may include a summary of the project, the amount and sources of funding, anticipated completion dates, or, in case of completed research, conclusions, recommendations, and applicability to state government and private sector functions. The department shall coordinate, promote, and respond to efforts by all sectors of the economy to seek financial support for energy activities. The department shall provide information to consumers regarding the anticipated energy-use and energy-saving characteristics of products and services in coordination with any federal, state, or local governmental agencies as may provide such information to consumers.
(k) The department shall coordinate energy-related programs of state government, including, but not limited to, the programs provided in this section. To this end, the department shall:
1. Provide assistance to other state agencies, counties, municipalities, and regional planning agencies to further and promote their energy planning activities.
2. Require, in cooperation with the Department of Management Services, all state agencies to operate state-owned and state-leased buildings in accordance with energy conservation standards as adopted by the Department of Management Services. Every 3 months, the Department of Management Services shall furnish the department data on agencies’ energy consumption in a format mutually agreed upon by the two departments.
3. Promote the development and use of renewable energy resources, energy efficiency technologies, and conservation measures.
4. Promote the recovery of energy from wastes, including, but not limited to, the use of waste heat, the use of agricultural products as a source of energy, and recycling of manufactured products. Such promotion shall be conducted in conjunction with, and after consultation with, the Department of Environmental Protection, the Florida Public Service Commission where electrical generation or natural gas is involved, and any other relevant federal, state, or local governmental agency having responsibility for resource recovery programs.
(l) The department shall develop, coordinate, and promote a comprehensive research plan for state programs. Such plan shall be consistent with state energy policy and shall be updated on a biennial basis.
(m) In recognition of the devastation to the economy of this state and the dangers to the health and welfare of residents of this state caused by Hurricane Andrew, and the potential for such impacts caused by other natural disasters, the department shall include in its energy emergency contingency plan and provide to the Department of Community Affairs for the inclusion in the state model energy efficiency building code specific provisions to facilitate the use of cost-effective solar energy technologies as emergency remedial and preventive measures for providing electric power, street lighting, and water heating service in the event of electric power outages.
(4) The department shall be responsible for the administration of the Coastal Energy Impact Program provided for and described in Pub. L. No. 94-370, 16 U.S.C. s. 1456a.
377.704 Appropriation of funds from settlement of petroleum overcharge litigation. — There are and will be funds available to this state due to settlements of litigation brought by the United States Department of Energy against oil companies and refineries. It is the intent of the Legislature that funds received as a result of federal statute or administrative or regulatory actions requiring the disbursement to states of refund moneys for alleged overcharges for crude oil or refined petroleum products sold during the period of time in which federal price controls on such crude oil and refined petroleum products were in effect, whether by themselves or in conjunction with other moneys appropriated by the Legislature, may not be expended unless appropriated in the General Appropriations Act or other subsequent specific appropriation by law.
SOLAR ENERGY STANDARDS ACT (Section 377.705, Florida Statute)
377.705 Solar Energy Center; development of solar energy standards.–
(1) SHORT TITLE.–This act shall be known and may be cited as the Solar Energy Standards Act of 1976.
(2) LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS AND INTENT.–
(a) The Legislature recognizes that if present trends continue, Florida will increase present energy consumption sixfold by the year 2000. Because of this dramatic increase and because existing domestic conventional energy resources will not provide sufficient energy to meet the nation’s future needs, new sources of energy must be developed and applied. One such source, solar energy, has been in limited use in Florida for 30 years. Applications of incident solar energy, the use of solar radiation to provide energy for water heating, space heating, space cooling, and other uses, through suitable absorbing equipment on or near a residence or commercial structure, must be extensively expanded. Unfortunately, the initial costs with regard to the production of solar energy have been prohibitively expensive. However, because of increases in the cost of conventional fuel, certain applications of solar energy are becoming competitive, particularly when life-cycle costs are considered. It is the intent of the Legislature in formulating a sound and balanced energy policy for the state to encourage the development of an alternative energy capability in the form of incident solar energy.
(b) Toward this purpose, the Legislature intends to provide incentives for the production and sale of, and to set standards for, solar energy systems. Such standards shall ensure that solar energy systems manufactured or sold within the state are effective and represent a high level of quality of materials, workmanship, and design.
(a) “Center” is defined as the Florida Solar Energy Center of the Board of Regents.
(b) “Solar energy systems” is defined as equipment which provides for the collection and use of incident solar energy for water heating, space heating or cooling, or other applications which normally require or would require a conventional source of energy such as petroleum products, natural gas, or electricity and which performs primarily with solar energy. In such other systems in which solar energy is used in a supplemental way, only those components which collect and transfer solar energy shall be included in this definition.
(4) FLORIDA SOLAR ENERGY CENTER TO SET STANDARDS, REQUIRE DISCLOSURE, SET TESTING FEES.–
(a) The center shall develop and promulgate standards for solar energy systems manufactured or sold in this state based on the best currently available information and shall consult with scientists, engineers, or persons in research centers who are engaged in the construction of, experimentation with, and research of solar energy systems to properly identify the most reliable designs and types of solar energy systems.
(b) The center shall establish criteria for testing performance of solar energy systems and shall maintain the necessary capability for testing or evaluating performance of solar energy systems. The center may accept results of tests on solar energy systems made by other organizations, companies, or persons when such tests are conducted according to the criteria established by the center and when the testing entity has no vested interest in the manufacture, distribution or sale of solar energy systems.
(c) The center shall be entitled to receive a testing fee sufficient to cover the costs of such testing. All testing fees shall be transmitted by the center to the Chief Financial Officer to be deposited in the Solar Energy Center Testing Trust Fund, which is hereby created in the State Treasury, and disbursed for the payment of expenses incurred in testing solar energy systems.
(d) All solar energy systems manufactured or sold in the state must meet the standards established by the center and shall display accepted results of approved performance tests in a manner prescribed by the center.
RESPONSIBILITIES OF ENTERPRISE FLORIDA WITH REGARD TO SOLAR ENERGY (Section 288.041-0415, Florida Statute)
288.041 Solar energy industry; legislative findings and policy; promotional activities.–
(1) It is hereby found and declared that:
(a) The solar energy industry in this state has been a leader in the nation in the manufacture, supply, and delivery of solar energy systems.
(b) The use of solar energy in this state has been demonstrated to save conventional energy sources.
(c) The solar energy industry offers the prospect for improved economic welfare of this state through creation of jobs, increased energy security, and enhancing the quality of the environment of this state.
(d) Through helping to provide for a clean environment and healthy economy, the solar energy industry contributes to the continued growth and development of the tourist industry of this state.
(2) It is the policy of this state to promote, stimulate, develop, and advance the growth of the solar energy industry in this state.
(3) Enterprise Florida, Inc., and its boards shall assist in the expansion of the solar energy industry in this state. Such efforts shall be undertaken in cooperation with theDepartment of Environmental Protection, the Florida Solar Energy Center, and the Florida Solar Energy Industries Association, and shall include:
(a) Providing assistance and support to new and existing photovoltaic companies, with special emphasis on attracting one or more manufacturers of photovoltaic products to locate within this state.
(b) Sponsoring initiatives which aid and take full advantage of the export market potential of solar technologies.
(c) Informing the business sector of this state about opportunities for cost-effective commercial applications of solar technologies.
(d) Encouraging employment of residents of this state by solar energy companies.
(e) Retaining existing solar energy companies and supporting their expansion efforts in this state.
(f) Supporting the promotion of solar energy by sponsoring workshops, seminars, conferences, and educational programs on the benefits of solar energy.
(g) Recognizing outstanding developments and achievements in, and contributions to, the solar energy industry.
(h) Collecting and disseminating solar energy information relevant to the promotion of solar energy applications.
(i) Enlisting the support of persons, civic groups, the solar energy industry, and other organizations to promote and improve solar energy products and services.
(4) The department shall also promote projects that demonstrate viable applications of solar technology which may include, but shall not be limited to: irrigation and stock watering, process heat for dairy and citrus operations, aquaculture, hydroponics, horticulture, waste detoxification, and other means of meeting the energy needs of the agricultural industry.
(5) By January 15 of each year, the Department of Environmental Protection shall report to the Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives on the impact of the solar energy industry on the economy of this state and shall make any recommendations on initiatives to further promote the solar energy industry as the department deems appropriate.
288.0415 Solar energy; advancement; economic development strategy.–The use of solar energy is a proven, effective means of reducing air pollution, while also creating new jobs, saving energy, lowering consumer utility bills, and stimulating economic development. As such, this state is committed to advancing the use of solar energy in the state. Towards this end, the state shall give priority to removing identified barriers to and providing incentives for increased solar energy development and use. In addition, the state shall capitalize on solar energy as an economic development strategy for job creation, market development, international trade, and other related means of stimulating and enhancing the economy of this state.
SOLAR ENERGY SYSTEM SALES TAX EXEMPTION (Section 212.08, Florida Statute)
212.08 Sales, rental, use, consumption, distribution, and storage tax; specified exemptions.–The sale at retail, the rental, the use, the consumption, the distribution, and the storage to be used or consumed in this state of the following are hereby specifically exempt from the tax imposed by this chapter.
(7) MISCELLANEOUS EXEMPTIONS.–
(hh) Solar energy systems.–Also exempt are solar energy systems or any component thereof. The Florida Solar Energy Center shall from time to time certify to the department a list of equipment and requisite hardware considered to be a solar energy system or a component thereof.
FLORIDA ENERGY CONSERVATION IN BUILDINGS ACT (Section 255.251-258, Florida Statute)
255.251 Energy Conservation in Buildings Act; short title.–This act shall be cited as the “Florida Energy Conservation in Buildings Act of 1974.”
255.252 Findings and intent.–
(1) Operating and maintenance expenditures associated with energy equipment and with energy consumed in state-financed and leased buildings represent a significant cost over the life of a building. Energy conserved by appropriate building design not only reduces the demand for energy but also reduces costs for building operation. For example, commercial buildings are estimated to use from 20 to 80 percent more energy than would be required if energy-conserving designs were used. The size, design, orientation, and operability of windows, the ratio of ventilating air to air heated or cooled, the level of lighting consonant with space-use requirements, the handling of occupancy loads, and the ability to zone off areas not requiring equivalent levels of heating or cooling are but a few of the considerations necessary to conserving energy.
(2) Significant efforts are underway by the General Services Administration, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and others to detail the considerations and practices for energy conservation in buildings. Most important is that energy-efficient designs provide energy savings over the life of the building structure. Conversely, energy-inefficient designs cause excess and wasteful energy use and high costs over that life. With buildings lasting many decades and with energy costs escalating rapidly, it is essential that the costs of operation and maintenance for energy-using equipment be included in all design proposals for state buildings.
(3) In order that such energy-efficiency considerations become a function of building design, and also a model for future application in the private sector, it shall be the policy of the state that buildings constructed and financed by the state be designed and constructed in a manner which will minimize the consumption of energy used in the operation and maintenance of such buildings. It is further the policy of the state, when economically feasible, to retrofit existing state-owned buildings in a manner which will minimize the consumption of energy used in the operation and maintenance of such buildings.
(4) In addition to designing and constructing new buildings to be energy-efficient, it shall be the policy of the state to operate, maintain, and renovate existing state facilities, or provide for their renovation, in a manner which will minimize energy consumption and ensure that facilities leased by the state are operated so as to minimize energy use. Agencies are encouraged to consider shared savings financing of such projects, using contracts which split the resulting savings for a specified period of time between the agency and the private firm or cogeneration contracts which otherwise permit the state to lower its energy costs. Such contracts may be funded from the operating budget.
255.253 Definitions; ss. 255.251-255.258.–
(1) “Department” means the Department of Management Services.
(2) “Facility” means a building or other structure.
(3) “Energy performance index or indices” (EPI) means a number describing the energy requirements at the building boundary of a facility, per square foot of floor space or per cubic foot of occupied volume, as appropriate under defined internal and external ambient conditions over an entire seasonal cycle. As experience develops on the energy performance achieved with state building, the indices (EPI) will serve as a measure of building performance with respect to energy consumption.
(4) “Life-cycle costs” means the cost of owning, operating, and maintaining the facility over the life of the structure. This may be expressed as an annual cost for each year of the facility’s use.
(5) “Shared savings financing” means the financing of energy conservation measures and maintenance services through a private firm which may own any purchased equipment for the duration of a contract, which shall not exceed 10 years unless so authorized by the department. Such contract shall specify that the private firm will be recompensed either out of a negotiated portion of the savings resulting from the conservation measures and maintenance services provided by the private firm or, in the case of a cogeneration project, through the payment of a rate for energy lower than would otherwise have been paid for the same energy from current sources.
255.254 No facility constructed or leased without life-cycle costs.–
(1) No state agency shall lease, construct, or have constructed, within limits prescribed herein, a facility without having secured from the department a proper evaluation of life-cycle costs, as computed by an architect or engineer. Furthermore, construction shall proceed only upon disclosing, for the facility chosen, the life-cycle costs as determined in s. 255.255 and the capitalization of the initial construction costs of the building. The life-cycle costs shall be a primary consideration in the selection of a building design. Such analysis shall be required only for construction of buildings with an area of 5,000 square feet or greater. For leased areas of 20,000 square feet or greater within a given building boundary, a life-cycle analysis shall be performed, and a lease shall only be made where there is a showing that the life-cycle costs are minimal compared to available like facilities.
(2) On and after January 1, 1979, no state agency shall initiate construction or have construction initiated, prior to approval thereof by the department, on a facility or self-contained unit of any facility, the design and construction of which incorporates or contemplates the use of an energy system other than a solar energy system when the life-cycle costs analysis prepared by the department has determined that a solar energy system is the most cost-efficient energy system for the facility or unit.
(3) After September 30, 1985, when any state agency must replace or supplement major items of energy-consuming equipment in existing state-owned or leased facilities or any self-contained unit of any facility with other major items of energy-consuming equipment, the selection of such items shall be made on the basis of a life-cycle cost analysis of alternatives in accordance with rules promulgated by the department under s. 255.255.
255.255 Life-cycle costs.– (1) The department shall promulgate rules and procedures, including energy conservation performance guidelines, for conducting a life-cycle cost analysis of alternative architectural and engineering designs and alternative major items of energy-consuming equipment to be retrofitted in existing state-owned or leased facilities and for developing energy performance indices to evaluate the efficiency of energy utilization for competing designs in the construction of state-financed and leased facilities.
(2) Such life-cycle costs shall be the sum of:
(a) The reasonably expected fuel costs over the life of the building, as determined by the department, that are required to maintain illumination, power, temperature, humidity, and ventilation and all other energy-consuming equipment in a facility, and
(b) The reasonable costs of probable maintenance, including labor and materials, and operation of the building.
(3) To determine the life-cycle costs as defined in paragraph (2)(b), the department shall promulgate rules that shall include, but not be limited to:
(a) The orientation and integration of the facility with respect to its physical site.
(b) The amount and type of glass employed in the facility and the directions of exposure.
(c) The effect of insulation incorporated into the facility design and the effect on solar utilization of the properties of external surfaces.
(d) The variable occupancy and operating conditions of the facility and subportions of the facility.
(e) An energy consumption analysis of the major equipment of the facility’s heating, ventilating, and cooling system, lighting system, hot water system, and all other major energy-consuming equipment and systems as appropriate. This analysis shall include:
1. The comparison of alternative systems.
2. A projection of the annual energy consumption of major energy-consuming equipment and systems for a range of operation of the facility over the life of the facility.
3. The evaluation of the energy consumption of component equipment in each system, considering the operation of such components at other than full or rated outputs.
(4) Such rules shall be based on the best currently available methods of analysis, including such as those of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and other federal agencies and professional societies and materials developed by the department. Provisions shall be made for an annual updating of rules and standards as required.
255.256 Energy performance index.–The department shall promulgate rules for energy performance indices as defined in s. 255.253(3) to audit and evaluate competing design proposals submitted to the state.
255.257 Energy management; buildings occupied by state agencies.–
(1) ENERGY CONSUMPTION AND COST DATA.–Each state agency shall collect data on energy consumption and cost. The data gathered shall be on state-owned facilities and metered state-leased facilities of 5,000 net square feet or more. These data will be used in the computation of the effectiveness of the state energy management plan and the effectiveness of the energy management program of each of the agencies.
(2) ENERGY MANAGEMENT COORDINATORS.–Each state agency, the Florida Public Service Commission, the Department of Military Affairs, and the judicial branch shall appoint a coordinator whose responsibility shall be to advise the head of the agency on matters relating to energy consumption in facilities under the control of that head or in space occupied by the various units comprising that agency, in vehicles operated by that agency, and in other energy-consuming activities of the agency. The coordinator shall implement the energy management program agreed upon by the agency concerned.
(3) CONTENTS OF THE STATE ENERGY MANAGEMENT PLAN.–The Department of Management Services may develop a state energy management plan consisting of, but not limited to, the following elements:
(a) Data-gathering requirements;
(b) Building energy audit procedures;
(c) Uniform data analysis procedures;
(d) Employee energy education program measures;
(e) Energy consumption reduction techniques;
(f) Training program for agency energy management coordinators; and
(g) Guidelines for building managers.
The plan shall include a description of actions to reduce consumption of electricity and nonrenewable energy sources used for space heating and cooling, ventilation, lighting, water heating, and transportation.
255.258 Shared savings financing of energy conservation in state-owned buildings.–
(1) It is the policy of the state to encourage agencies to consider financing energy conservation measures and maintenance services through the use of shared savings financing as defined in s. 255.253(5), any other statutes to the contrary notwithstanding.
(2) Except as noted in subsection (4), state agency shared savings contracts shall be developed in accordance with a model contract to be developed by the department in cooperation with the Attorney General, the Chief Financial Officer, and the Department of Community Affairs. The model contract shall include the methodology for calculating base line energy costs, a procedure for revising these costs should the state institute additional energy conservation features or building use change, a requirement for a performance bond guaranteeing that the facility will be restored to the original condition in the event of default, a provision for early buy-out, a clause specifying who will be responsible for maintaining the equipment, and a provision allowing the disposal of equipment at the end of the contract. No agency shall substantially alter the provisions described in the model without the permission of the department.
(3) Contracts subject to this act shall be considered as contracts for the acquisition or purchase of commodities as defined in chapter 287.
(4) Agencies desiring to implement shared savings demonstration programs prior to adoption of formal rules shall do so in cooperation with the Department of Community Affairs and the Department of Management Services.
(5) Notwithstanding chapter 366, provision of electric power to a state agency pursuant to a shared savings contract shall be allowed when a state agency is the sole recipient of electric power from a cogeneration facility, other than an electric utility, owned by a private firm but located on the agency’s premises when a state agency has the ability to purchase the facility at the end of the contractual term. As used in this subsection, the term “premises” means the single unit of property on which the cogeneration facility and the state agency’s facility to which power is supplied is located.
(6) Nothing herein shall affect the Public Service Commission’s jurisdiction to set just, equitable, and reasonable rates for electric service pursuant to chapter 366.
GUARANTEED ENERGY PERFORMANCE SAVINGS CONTRACTING (Section 489.145, Florida Statute)
489.145 Guaranteed energy performance savings contracting.–
(1) SHORT TITLE.–This section may be cited as the “Guaranteed Energy Performance Savings Contracting Act.”
(2) LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS.–The Legislature finds that investment in energy conservation measures in agency facilities can reduce the amount of energy consumed and produce immediate and long-term savings. It is the policy of this state to encourage agencies to invest in energy conservation measures that reduce energy consumption, produce a cost savings for the agency, and improve the quality of indoor air in public facilities and to operate, maintain, and, when economically feasible, build or renovate existing agency facilities in such a manner as to minimize energy consumption and maximize energy savings. It is further the policy of this state to encourage agencies to reinvest any energy savings resulting from energy conservation measures in additional energy conservation efforts.
(3) DEFINITIONS.–As used in this section, the term:
(a) “Agency” means the state, a municipality, or a political subdivision.
(b) “Energy conservation measure” means a training program, facility alteration, or equipment purchase to be used in new construction, including an addition to an existing facility, which reduces energy or operating costs and includes, but is not limited to:
1. Insulation of the facility structure and systems within the facility.
2. Storm windows and doors, caulking or weatherstripping, multiglazed windows and doors, heat-absorbing, or heat-reflective, glazed and coated window and door systems, additional glazing, reductions in glass area, and other window and door system modifications that reduce energy consumption.
3. Automatic energy control systems.
4. Heating, ventilating, or air-conditioning system modifications or replacements.
5. Replacement or modifications of lighting fixtures to increase the energy efficiency of the lighting system, which, at a minimum, must conform to the applicable state or local building code.
6. Energy recovery systems.
7. Cogeneration systems that produce steam or forms of energy such as heat, as well as electricity, for use primarily within a facility or complex of facilities.
8. Energy conservation measures that provide long-term operating cost reductions or significantly reduce Btu consumed.
9. Renewable energy systems, such as solar, biomass, or wind systems.
10. Devices that reduce water consumption or sewer charges.
11. Storage systems, such as fuel cells and thermal storage.
12. Generating technologies, such as microturbines.
13. Any other repair, replacement, or upgrade of existing equipment.
(c) “Energy cost savings” means a measured reduction in the cost of fuel, energy consumption, and stipulated operation and maintenance created from the implementation of one or more energy conservation measures when compared with an established baseline for the previous cost of fuel, energy consumption, and stipulated operation and maintenance.
(d) “Guaranteed energy performance savings contract” means a contract for the evaluation, recommendation, and implementation of energy conservation measures, which, at a minimum, shall include:
1. The design and installation of equipment to implement one or more of such measures and, if applicable, operation and maintenance of such measures.
2. The amount of any actual annual savings that meet or exceed total annual contract payments made by the agency for the contract.
3. The finance charges incurred by the agency over the life of the contract.
(e) “Guaranteed energy performance savings contractor” means a person or business that is licensed under chapter 471, chapter 481, or this chapter, and is experienced in the analysis, design, implementation, or installation of energy conservation measures through energy performance contracts.
(a) An agency may enter into a guaranteed energy performance savings contract with a guaranteed energy performance savings contractor to significantly reduce energy or operating costs of an agency facility through one or more energy conservation measures.
(b) Before design and installation of energy conservation measures, the agency must obtain from a guaranteed energy performance savings contractor a report that summarizes the costs associated with the energy conservation measures and provides an estimate of the amount of the energy cost savings. The agency and the guaranteed energy performance savings contractor may enter into a separate agreement to pay for costs associated with the preparation and delivery of the report; however, payment to the contractor shall be contingent upon the report’s projection of energy cost savings being equal to or greater than the total projected costs of the design and installation of the report’s energy conservation measures.
(c) The agency may enter into a guaranteed energy performance savings contract with a guaranteed energy performance savings contractor if the agency finds that the amount the agency would spend on the energy conservation measures will not likely exceed the amount of the energy cost savings for up to 20 years from the date of installation, based on the life cycle cost calculations provided in s. 255.255, if the recommendations in the report were followed and if the qualified provider or providers give a written guarantee that the energy cost savings will meet or exceed the costs of the system. The contract may provide for installment payments for a period not to exceed 20 years.
(d) A guaranteed energy performance savings contractor must be selected in compliance with s. 287.055; except that if fewer than three firms are qualified to perform the required services, the requirement for agency selection of three firms, as provided in s. 287.055(4)(b), and the bid requirements of s. 287.057 do not apply.
(e) Before entering into a guaranteed energy performance savings contract, an agency must provide published notice of the meeting in which it proposes to award the contract, the names of the parties to the proposed contract, and the contract’s purpose.
(f) A guaranteed energy performance savings contract may provide for financing, including tax exempt financing, by a third party. The contract for third party financing may be separate from the energy performance contract. A separate contract for third party financing must include a provision that the third party financier must not be granted rights or privileges that exceed the rights and privileges available to the guaranteed energy performance savings contractor.
(g) In determining the amount the agency will finance to acquire the energy conservation measures, the agency may reduce such amount by the application of any grant moneys, rebates, or capital funding available to the agency for the purpose of buying down the cost of the guaranteed energy performance savings contract. However, in calculating the life cycle cost as required in paragraph (c), the agency shall not apply any grants, rebates, or capital funding.
(5) CONTRACT PROVISIONS.–
(a) A guaranteed energy performance savings contract must include a written guarantee that may include, but is not limited to the form of, a letter of credit, insurance policy, or corporate guarantee by the guaranteed energy performance savings contractor that annual energy cost savings will meet or exceed the amortized cost of energy conservation measures.
(b) The guaranteed energy performance savings contract must provide that all payments, except obligations on termination of the contract before its expiration, may be made over time, but not to exceed 20 years from the date of complete installation and acceptance by the agency, and that the annual savings are guaranteed to the extent necessary to make annual payments to satisfy the guaranteed energy performance savings contract.
(c) The guaranteed energy performance savings contract must require that the guaranteed energy performance savings contractor to whom the contract is awarded provide a 100-percent public construction bond to the agency for its faithful performance, as required by s. 255.05.
(d) The guaranteed energy performance savings contract may contain a provision allocating to the parties to the contract any annual energy cost savings that exceed the amount of the energy cost savings guaranteed in the contract.
(e) The guaranteed energy performance savings contract shall require the guaranteed energy performance savings contractor to provide to the agency an annual reconciliation of the guaranteed energy cost savings. If the reconciliation reveals a shortfall in annual energy cost savings, the guaranteed energy performance savings contractor is liable for such shortfall. If the reconciliation reveals an excess in annual energy cost savings, the excess savings may be allocated under paragraph (d) but may not be used to cover potential energy cost savings shortages in subsequent contract years.
(f) The guaranteed energy performance savings contract must provide for payments of not less than one-twentieth of the price to be paid within 2 years from the date of the complete installation and acceptance by the agency, and the remaining costs to be paid at least quarterly, not to exceed a 20-year term, based on life cycle cost calculations.
(g) The guaranteed energy performance savings contract may extend beyond the fiscal year in which it becomes effective; however, the term of any contract expires at the end of each fiscal year and may be automatically renewed annually for up to 20 years, subject to the agency making sufficient annual appropriations based upon continued realized energy savings.
(h) The guaranteed energy performance savings contract must stipulate that it does not constitute a debt, liability, or obligation of the state.
(6) PROGRAM ADMINISTRATION AND CONTRACT REVIEW.–The Department of Management Services, with the assistance of the Office of the Chief Financial Officer, may, within available resources, provide technical assistance to state agencies contracting for energy conservation measures and engage in other activities considered appropriate by the department for promoting and facilitating guaranteed energy performance contracting by state agencies. The Office of the Chief Financial Officer, with the assistance of the Department of Management Services, may, within available resources, develop model contractual and related documents for use by state agencies. Prior to entering into a guaranteed energy performance savings contract, any contract or lease for third-party financing, or any combination of such contracts, a state agency shall submit such proposed contract or lease to the Office of the Chief Financial Officer for review and approval.
FLORIDA ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND
CONSERVATION ACT (FEECA, Section 366.80-85, Florida Statute)
366.80 Short title.–Sections 366.80-366.85 and 403.519 shall be known and may be cited as the “Florida Energy Efficiency and Conservation Act.”
366.81 Legislative findings and intent.–The Legislature finds and declares that it is critical to utilize the most efficient and cost-effective energy conservation systems in order to protect the health, prosperity, and general welfare of the state and its citizens. Reduction in, and control of, the growth rates of electric consumption and of weather-sensitive peak demand are of particular importance. The Legislature further finds that the Florida Public Service Commission is the appropriate agency to adopt goals and approve plans related to the conservation of electric energy and natural gas usage. The Legislature directs the commission to develop and adopt overall goals and authorizes the commission to require each utility to develop plans and implement programs for increasing energy efficiency and conservation within its service area, subject to the approval of the commission. Since solutions to our energy problems are complex, the Legislature intends that the use of solar energy, renewable energy sources, highly efficient systems, cogeneration, and load-control systems be encouraged. Accordingly, in exercising its jurisdiction, the commission shall not approve any rate or rate structure which discriminates against any class of customers on account of the use of such facilities, systems, or devices. This expression of legislative intent shall not be construed to preclude experimental rates, rate structures, or programs. The Legislature further finds and declares that ss. 366.80-366.85 and 403.519 are to be liberally construed in order to meet the complex problems of reducing and controlling the growth rates of electric consumption and reducing the growth rates of weather-sensitive peak demand; increasing the overall efficiency and cost-effectiveness of electricity and natural gas production and use; encouraging further development of cogeneration facilities; and conserving expensive resources, particularly petroleum fuels.
366.82 Definition; goals; plans; programs; annual reports; energy audits.–
(1) For the purposes of ss. 366.80-366.85 and 403.519, “utility” means any person or entity of whatever form which provides electricity or natural gas at retail to the public, specifically including municipalities or instrumentalities thereof and cooperatives organized under the Rural Electric Cooperative Law and specifically excluding any municipality or instrumentality thereof, any cooperative organized under the Rural Electric Cooperative Law, or any other person or entity providing natural gas at retail to the public whose annual sales volume is less than 100 million therms or any municipality or instrumentality thereof and any cooperative organized under the Rural Electric Cooperative Law providing electricity at retail to the public whose annual sales as of July 1, 1993, to end-use customers is less than 2,000 gigawatt hours.
(2) The commission shall adopt appropriate goals for increasing the efficiency of energy consumption and increasing the development of cogeneration, specifically including goals designed to increase the conservation of expensive resources, such as petroleum fuels, to reduce and control the growth rates of electric consumption, and to reduce the growth rates of weather-sensitive peak demand. The Executive Office of the Governor shall be a party in the proceedings to adopt goals. The commission may change the goals for reasonable cause. The time period to review the goals, however, shall not exceed 5 years. After the programs and plans to meet those goals are completed, the commission shall determine what further goals, programs, or plans are warranted and, if so, shall adopt them.
(3) Following adoption of goals pursuant to subsection (2), the commission shall require each utility to develop plans and programs to meet the overall goals within its service area. If any plan or program includes loans, collection of loans, or similar banking functions by a utility and the plan is approved by the commission, the utility shall perform such functions, notwithstanding any other provision of the law. The commission may pledge up to $5 million of the Florida Public Service Regulatory Trust Fund to guarantee such loans. However, no utility shall be required to loan its funds for the purpose of purchasing or otherwise acquiring conservation measures or devices, but nothing herein shall prohibit or impair the administration or implementation of a utility plan as submitted by a utility and approved by the commission under this subsection. If the commission disapproves a plan, it shall specify the reasons for disapproval, and the utility whose plan is disapproved shall resubmit its modified plan within 30 days. Prior approval by the commission shall be required to modify or discontinue a plan, or part thereof, which has been approved. If any utility has not implemented its programs and is not substantially in compliance with the provisions of its approved plan at any time, the commission shall adopt programs required for that utility to achieve the overall goals. Utility programs may include variations in rate design, load control, cogeneration, residential energy conservation subsidy, or any other measure within the jurisdiction of the commission which the commission finds likely to be effective; this provision shall not be construed to preclude these measures in any plan or program.
(4) The commission shall require periodic reports from each utility and shall provide the Legislature and the Governor with an annual report by March 1 of the goals it has adopted and its progress toward meeting those goals. The commission shall also consider the performance of each utility pursuant to ss. 366.80-366.85 and 403.519 when establishing rates for those utilities over which the commission has ratesetting authority.
(5) The commission shall require each utility to offer, or to contract to offer, energy audits to its residential customers. This requirement need not be uniform, but may be based on such factors as level of usage, geographic location, or any other reasonable criterion, so long as all eligible customers are notified. The commission may extend this requirement to some or all commercial customers. The commission shall set the charge for audits by rule, not to exceed the actual cost, and may describe by rule the general form and content of an audit. In the event one utility contracts with another utility to perform audits for it, the utility for which the audits are performed shall pay the contracting utility the reasonable cost of performing the audits. Each utility over which the commission has ratesetting authority shall estimate its costs and revenues for audits, conservation programs, and implementation of its plan for the immediately following 6-month period. Reasonable and prudent unreimbursed costs projected to be incurred, or any portion of such costs, may be added to the rates which would otherwise be charged by a utility upon approval by the commission, provided that the commission shall not allow the recovery of the cost of any company image-enhancing advertising or of any advertising not directly related to an approved conservation program. Following each 6-month period, each utility shall report the actual results for that period to the commission, and the difference, if any, between actual and projected results shall be taken into account in succeeding periods. The state plan as submitted for consideration under the National Energy Conservation Policy Act shall not be in conflict with any state law or regulation.
(6)(a) Notwithstanding the provisions of s. 377.703, the commission shall be the responsible state agency for performing, coordinating, implementing, or administering the functions of the state plan submitted for consideration under the National Energy Conservation Policy Act and any acts amendatory thereof or supplemental thereto and for performing, coordinating, implementing, or administering the functions of any future federal program delegated to the state which relates to consumption, utilization, or conservation of electricity or natural gas; and the commission shall have exclusive responsibility for preparing all reports, information, analyses, recommendations, and materials related to consumption, utilization, or conservation of electrical energy which are required or authorized by s. 377.703.
(b) The Executive Office of the Governor shall be a party in the proceedings to adopt goals and shall file with the commission comments on the proposed goals including, but not limited to:
1. An evaluation of utility load forecasts, including an assessment of alternative supply and demand side resource options.
2. An analysis of various policy options which can be implemented to achieve a least-cost strategy.
(7) The commission shall establish all minimum requirements for energy auditors used by each utility. The commission is authorized to contract with any public agency or other person to provide any training, testing, evaluation, or other step necessary to fulfill the provisions of this subsection.
STATE COMPREHENSIVE PLAN (Section 187.201, Florida Statute)
187.201 State Comprehensive Plan adopted.–The Legislature hereby adopts as the State Comprehensive Plan the following specific goals and policies:
(10) AIR QUALITY.–
(a) Goal.–Florida shall comply with all national air quality standards by 1987, and by 1992 meet standards which are more stringent than 1985 state standards.
1. Improve air quality and maintain the improved level to safeguard human health and prevent damage to the natural environment.
2. Ensure that developments and transportation systems are consistent with the maintenance of optimum air quality.
3. Reduce sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions and mitigate their effects on the natural and human environment.
4. Encourage the use of alternative energy resources that do not degrade air quality.
5. Ensure, at a minimum, that power plant fuel conversion does not result in higher levels of air pollution.
(a) Goal.–Florida shall reduce its energy requirements through enhanced conservation and efficiency measures in all end-use sectors, while at the same time promoting an increased use of renewable energy resources.
1. Continue to reduce per capita energy consumption.
2. Encourage and provide incentives for consumer and producer energy conservation and establish acceptable energy performance standards for buildings and energy consuming items.
3. Improve the efficiency of traffic flow on existing roads.
4. Ensure energy efficiency in transportation design and planning and increase the availability of more efficient modes of transportation.
5. Reduce the need for new power plants by encouraging end-use efficiency, reducing peak demand, and using cost-effective alternatives.
6. Increase the efficient use of energy in design and operation of buildings, public utility systems, and other infrastructure and related equipment.
7. Promote the development and application of solar energy technologies and passive solar design techniques.
8. Provide information on energy conservation through active media campaigns.
9. Promote the use and development of renewable energy resources.
10. Develop and maintain energy preparedness plans that will be both practical and effective under circumstances of disrupted energy supplies or unexpected price surges.
STATE UNIFORM BUILDING CODE FOR PUBLIC EDUCATIONAL FACILITIES CONSTRUCTION (Section 1013.37, Florida Statute)
1013.37 State uniform building code for public educational facilities construction.–
(1) UNIFORM BUILDING CODE.–A uniform statewide building code for the planning and construction of public educational and ancillary plants by district school boards and community college district boards of trustees shall be adopted by the Florida Building Commission within the Florida Building Code, pursuant to s. 553.73. Included in this code must be flood plain management criteria in compliance with the rules and regulations in 44 C.F.R. parts 59 and 60, and subsequent revisions thereto which are adopted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. It is also the responsibility of the department to develop, as a part of the uniform building code, standards relating to:
(a) Prefabricated facilities or factory-built facilities that are designed to be portable, relocatable, demountable, or reconstructible; are used primarily as classrooms; and do not fall under the provisions of ss. 320.822-320.862. Such standards must permit boards to contract with the Department of Community Affairs for factory inspections by certified building code inspectors to certify conformance with applicable law and rules. The standards must comply with the requirements of s. 1013.20 for relocatable facilities intended for long-term use as classroom space, and the relocatable facilities shall be designed subject to missile impact criteria of s. 423(24)(d)(1) of the Florida Building Code when located in the windborne debris region.
(b) The sanitation of educational and ancillary plants and the health of occupants of educational and ancillary plants.
(c) The safety of occupants of educational and ancillary plants as provided in s. 1013.12, except that the fire safety criteria shall be established by the State Fire Marshal in cooperation with the Florida Building Commission and the department and such firesafety requirements must be incorporated into the Florida Fire Prevention Code.
(d) Accessibility for children, notwithstanding the provisions of s. 553.512.
(e) The performance of life-cycle cost analyses on alternative architectural and engineering designs to evaluate their energy efficiencies.
1. The life-cycle cost analysis must consist of the sum of:
a. The reasonably expected fuel costs over the life of the building which are required to maintain illumination, water heating, temperature, humidity, ventilation, and all other energy-consuming equipment in a facility; and
b. The reasonable costs of probable maintenance, including labor and materials, and operation of the building.
2. For computation of the life-cycle costs, the department shall develop standards that must include, but need not be limited to:
a. The orientation and integration of the facility with respect to its physical site.
b. The amount and type of glass employed in the facility and the directions of exposure.
c. The effect of insulation incorporated into the facility design and the effect on solar utilization of the properties of external surfaces.
d. The variable occupancy and operating conditions of the facility and subportions of the facility.
e. An energy-consumption analysis of the major equipment of the facility’s heating, ventilating, and cooling system; lighting system; and hot water system and all other major energy-consuming equipment and systems as appropriate.
3. Life-cycle cost criteria published by the Department of Education for use in evaluating projects.
4. Standards for construction materials and systems based on life-cycle costs that consider initial costs, maintenance costs, custodial costs, operating costs, and life expectancy. The standards may include multiple acceptable materials. It is the intent of the Legislature to require district school boards to comply with these standards when expending funds from the Public Education Capital Outlay and Debt Service Trust Fund or the School District and Community College District Capital Outlay and Debt Service Trust Fund and to prohibit district school boards from expending local capital outlay revenues for any project that includes materials or systems that do not comply with these standards, unless the district school board submits evidence that alternative materials or systems meet or exceed standards developed by the department.
It is not a purpose of the Florida Building Code to inhibit the use of new materials or innovative techniques; nor may it specify or prohibit materials by brand names. The code must be flexible enough to cover all phases of construction so as to afford reasonable protection for the public safety, health, and general welfare. The department may secure the service of other state agencies or such other assistance as it finds desirable in recommending to the Florida Building Commission revisions to the code.
(a) Before a contract has been let for the construction, the department, the district school board, the community college board, or its authorized review agent must approve the phase III construction documents. A district school board or community college board may reuse prototype plans on another site, provided the facilities list and phase III construction documents have been updated for the new site and for compliance with the Florida Building Code and the Florida Fire Prevention Code and any laws relating to firesafety, health and sanitation, casualty safety, and requirements for the physically handicapped which are in effect at the time a construction contract is to be awarded.
(b) In reviewing plans for approval, the department, the district school board, the community college board, or its review agent as authorized in s. 1013.38, shall take into consideration:
1. The need for the new facility.
2. The educational and ancillary plant planning.
3. The architectural and engineering planning.
4. The location on the site.
5. Plans for future expansion.
6. The type of construction.
7. Sanitary provisions.
8. Conformity to Florida Building Code standards.
9. The structural design and strength of materials proposed to be used.
10. The mechanical design of any heating, air-conditioning, plumbing, or ventilating system. Typical heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning systems preapproved by the department for specific applications may be used in the design of educational facilities.
11. The electrical design of educational plants.
12. The energy efficiency and conservation of the design.
13. Life-cycle cost considerations.
14. The design to accommodate physically handicapped persons.
15. The ratio of net to gross square footage.
16. The proposed construction cost per gross square foot.
17. Conformity with the Florida Fire Prevention Code.
(c) The district school board or the community college board may not occupy a facility until the project has been inspected to verify compliance with statutes, rules, and codes affecting the health and safety of the occupants. Verification of compliance with rules, statutes, and codes for nonoccupancy projects such as roofing, paving, site improvements, or replacement of equipment may be certified by the architect or engineer of record, and verification of compliance for other projects may be made by an inspector certified by the department or certified pursuant to chapter 468 who is not the architect or engineer of record. The board shall maintain a record of the project’s completion and permanent archive of phase III construction documents, including any addenda and change orders to the project. The boards shall provide project data to the department, as requested, for purposes and reports needed by the Legislature.
(3) REVIEW PROCEDURE.–The Commissioner of Education shall cooperate with the Florida Building Commission in addressing all questions, disputes, or interpretations involving the provisions of the Florida Building Code which govern the construction of public educational and ancillary facilities, and any objections to decisions made by the inspectors or the department must be submitted in writing.
(4) BIENNIAL REVIEW AND UPDATE; DISSEMINATION.–The department shall biennially review and recommend to the Florida Building Commission updates and revisions to the provisions of the Florida Building Code which govern the construction of public educational and ancillary facilities. The department shall publish and make available to each board at no cost copies of the state requirements for educational facilities and each amendment and revision thereto. The department shall make additional copies available to all interested persons at a price sufficient to recover costs.
(5) LOCAL LEGISLATION PROHIBITED.–After June 30, 1985, pursuant to s. 11(a)(21), Art. III of the State Constitution, there shall not be enacted any special act or general law of local application which proposes to amend, alter, or contravene any provisions of the State Building Code adopted under the authority of this section.
(1) The Legislature finds that it is in the public interest to promote the development of renewable energy resources in this state. Renewable energy resources have the potential to help diversify fuel types to meet Florida’s growing dependency on natural gas for electric production, minimize the volatility of fuel costs, encourage investment within the state, improve environmental conditions, and make Florida a leader in new and innovative technologies.
(2) As used in this section, the term:
25-6.065 Interconnection and Net Metering of Customer-Owned Renewable Generation.
(1) Application and Scope. The purpose of this rule is to promote the development of small customer-owned renewable generation, particularly solar and wind energy systems; diversify the types of fuel used to generate electricity in Florida; lessen Florida’s dependence on fossil fuels for the production of electricity; minimize the volatility of fuel costs; encourage investment in the state; improve environmental conditions; and, at the same time, minimize costs of power supply to investor-owned utilities and their customers. This rule applies to all investor-owned utilities, except as otherwise stated in subsection (10).
(2) Definitions. As used in this rule, the term.
(a) “Customer-owned renewable generation” means an electric generating system located on a customer’s premises that is primarily intended to offset part or all of the customer’s electricity requirements with renewable energy. The term “customer-owned renewable generation” does not preclude the customer of record from contracting for the purchase, lease, operation, or maintenance of an on-site renewable generation system with a third-party under terms and conditions that do not include the retail purchase of electricity from the third party.
(b) “Gross power rating” means the total manufacturer’s AC nameplate generating capacity of an on-site customer-owned renewable generation system that will be interconnected to and operate in parallel with the investor-owned utility’s distribution facilities. For inverter-based systems, the AC nameplate generating capacity shall be calculated by multiplying the total installed DC nameplate generating capacity by .85 in order to account for losses during the conversion from DC to AC.
(c) “Net metering” means a metering and billing methodology whereby customer-owned renewable generation is allowed to offset the customer’s electricity consumption on-site.
(d) “Renewable energy,” as defined in Section 377.803, F.S., means electrical, mechanical, or thermal energy produced from a method that uses one or more of the following fuels or energy sources: hydrogen, biomass, solar energy, geothermal energy, wind energy, ocean energy, waste heat, or hydroelectric power.
(3) Standard Interconnection Agreements. Each investor-owned utility shall, within 30 days of the effective date of this rule, file for Commission approval a Standard Interconnection Agreement for expedited interconnection of customer-owned renewable generation, up to 2 MW, that complies with the following standards:
(a) IEEE 1547 (2003) Standard for Interconnecting Distributed Resources with Electric Power Systems;
(b) IEEE 1547.1 (2005) Standard Conformance Test Procedures for Equipment Interconnecting Distributed Resources with Electric Power Systems; and
(c) UL 1741 (2005) Inverters, Converters, Controllers and Interconnection System Equipment for Use With Distributed Energy Resources.
(d) A copy of IEEE 1547 (2003), ISBN number 0-7381-3720-0, and IEEE 1547.1 (2005), ISBN number 0-7381-4737-0, may be obtained from the Institute of Electric and Electronic Engineers, Inc. (IEEE), 3 Park Avenue, New York, NY, 10016-5997. A copy of UL 1741 (2005) may be obtained from COMM 2000, 1414 Brook Drive, Downers Grove, IL 60515.
(4) Customer Qualifications and Fees.
(a) To qualify for expedited interconnection under this rule, customer-owned renewable generation must have a gross power rating that:
- Does not exceed 90% of the customer’s utility distribution service rating; and
- Falls within one of the following ranges:
Tier 1 ‒ 10 kW or less;
Tier 2 – greater than 10 kW and less than or equal to 100 kW; or
Tier 3 – greater than 100 kW and less than or equal to 2 MW.
(b) Customer-owned renewable generation shall be considered certified for interconnected operation if it has been submitted by a manufacturer to a nationally recognized testing and certification laboratory, and has been tested and listed by the laboratory for continuous interactive operation with an electric distribution system in compliance with the applicable codes and standards listed in subsection (3).
(c) Customer-owned renewable generation shall include a utility-interactive inverter, or other device certified pursuant to paragraph (4)(b) that performs the function of automatically isolating the customer-owned generation equipment from the electric grid in the event the electric grid loses power.
(d) For Tiers 1 and 2, provided the customer-owned renewable generation equipment complies with paragraphs (4)(a) and (b), the investor-owned utility shall not require further design review, testing, or additional equipment other than that provided for in subsection (6). For Tier 3, if an interconnection study is necessary, further design review, testing and additional equipment as identified in the study may be required.
(e) Tier 1 customers who request interconnection of customer-owned renewable generation shall not be charged fees in addition to those charged to other retail customers without self-generation, including application fees.
(f) Along with the Standard Interconnection Agreement filed pursuant to subsection (3), each investor-owned utility may propose for Commission approval a standard application fee for Tiers 2 and 3, including itemized cost support for each cost contained within the fee.
(g) Each investor-owned utility may also propose for Commission approval an Interconnection Study Charge for Tier 3.
(h) Each investor-owned utility shall show that their fees and charges are cost-based and reasonable. No fees or charges shall be assessed for interconnecting customer-owned renewable generation without prior Commission approval.
(5) Contents of Standard Interconnection Agreement. Each investor-owned utility’s customer-owned renewable generation Standard Interconnection Agreement shall, at a minimum, contain the following:
(a) A requirement that customer-owned renewable generation must be inspected and approved by local code officials prior to its operation in parallel with the investor-owned utility to ensure compliance with applicable local codes.
(b) Provisions that permit the investor-owned utility to inspect customer-owned renewable generation and its component equipment, and the documents necessary to ensure compliance with subsections (2) through (4). The customer shall notify the investor-owned utility at least 10 days prior to initially placing customer equipment and protective apparatus in service, and the investor-owned utility shall have the right to have personnel present on the in-service date. If the customer-owned renewable generation system is subsequently modified in order to increase its gross power rating, the customer must notify the investor-owned utility by submitting a new application specifying the modifications at least 30 days prior to making the modifications.
(c) A provision that the customer is responsible for protecting the renewable generating equipment, inverters, protective devices, and other system components from damage from the normal and abnormal conditions and operations that occur on the investor-owned utility system in delivering and restoring power; and is responsible for ensuring that customer-owned renewable generation equipment is inspected, maintained, and tested in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure that it is operating correctly and safely.
(d) A provision that the customer shall hold harmless and indemnify the investor-owned utility for all loss to third parties resulting from the operation of the customer-owned renewable generation, except when the loss occurs due to the negligent actions of the investor-owned utility. A provision that the investor-owned utility shall hold harmless and indemnify the customer for all loss to third parties resulting from the operation of the investor-owned utility’s system, except when the loss occurs due to the negligent actions of the customer.
(e) A requirement for general liability insurance for personal and property damage, or sufficient guarantee and proof of self-insurance, in the amount of no more than $1 million for Tier 2, and no more than $2 million for Tier 3. The investor-owned utility shall not require liability insurance for Tier 1. The investor-owned utility may include in the Interconnection Agreement a recommendation that Tier 1 customers carry an appropriate level of liability insurance.
(f) Identification of any fees or charges approved pursuant to subsection (4).
(6) Manual Disconnect Switch.
(a) Each investor-owned utility’s customer-owned renewable generation Standard Interconnection Agreement may require customers to install, at the customer’s expense, a manual disconnect switch of the visible load break type to provide a separation point between the AC power output of the customer-owned renewable generation and any customer wiring connected to the investor-owned utility’s system. Inverter-based Tier 1 customer-owned renewable generation systems shall be exempt from this requirement, unless the manual disconnect switch is installed at the investor-owned utility’s expense. The manual disconnect switch shall be mounted separate from, but adjacent to, the meter socket and shall be readily accessible to the investor-owned utility and capable of being locked in the open position with a single investor-owned utility padlock.
(b) The investor-owned utility may open the switch pursuant to the conditions set forth in paragraph (6)(c), isolating the customer-owned renewable generation, without prior notice to the customer. To the extent practicable, however, prior notice shall be given. If prior notice is not given, the utility shall at the time of disconnection leave a door hanger notifying the customer that their customer-owned renewable generation has been disconnected, including an explanation of the condition necessitating such action. The investor-owned utility shall reconnect the customer-owned renewable generation as soon as the condition necessitating disconnection is remedied.
(c) Any of the following conditions shall be cause for the investor-owned utility to disconnect customer-owned renewable generation from its system:
- Emergencies or maintenance requirements on the investor-owned utility’s electric system;
- Hazardous conditions existing on the investor-owned utility system due to the operation of the customer’s generating or protective equipment as determined by the investor-owned utility;
- Adverse electrical effects, such as power quality problems, on the electrical equipment of the investor-owned utility’s other electric consumers caused by the customer-owned renewable generation as determined by the investor-owned utility;
- Failure of the customer to maintain the required insurance coverage.
(7) Administrative Requirements.
(a) Each investor-owned utility shall maintain on its website a downloadable application for interconnection of customer-owned renewable generation, detailing the information necessary to execute the Standard Interconnection Agreement. Upon request the investor-owned utility shall provide a hard copy of the application within 5 business days.
(b) Within 10 business days of receipt of the customer’s application, the investor-owned utility shall provide written notice that it has received all documents required by the Standard Interconnection Agreement or indicate how the application is deficient. Within 10 business days of receipt of a completed application, the utility shall provide written notice verifying receipt of the completed application. The written notice shall also include dates for any physical inspection of the customer-owned renewable generation necessary for the investor-owned utility to confirm compliance with subsections (2) through (6), and confirmation of whether a Tier 3 interconnection study will be necessary.
(c) The Standard Interconnection Agreement shall be executed by the investor-owned utility within 30 calendar days of receipt of a completed application. If the investor-owned utility determines that an interconnection study is necessary for a Tier 3 customer, the investor-owned utility shall execute the Standard Interconnection Agreement within 90 days of a completed application.
(d) The customer must execute the Standard Interconnection Agreement and return it to the investor-owned utility at least 30 calendar days prior to beginning parallel operations and within one year after the utility executes the Agreement. All physical inspections must be completed by the utility within 30 calendar days of receipt of the customer’s executed Standard Interconnection Agreement. If the inspection is delayed at the customer’s request, the customer shall contact the utility to reschedule an inspection. The investor-owned utility shall reschedule the inspection within 10 business days of the customer’s request.
(8) Net Metering.
(a) Each investor-owned utility shall enable each customer-owned renewable generation facility interconnected to the investor-owned utility’s electrical grid pursuant to this rule to net meter.
(b) Each investor-owned utility shall install, at no additional cost to the customer, metering equipment at the point of delivery capable of measuring the difference between the electricity supplied to the customer from the investor-owned utility and the electricity generated by the customer and delivered to the investor-owned utility’s electric grid.
(c) Meter readings shall be taken monthly on the same cycle as required under the otherwise applicable rate schedule.
(d) The investor-owned utility shall charge for electricity used by the customer in excess of the generation supplied by customer-owned renewable generation in accordance with normal billing practices.
(e) During any billing cycle, excess customer-owned renewable generation delivered to the investor-owned utility’s electric grid shall be credited to the customer’s energy consumption for the next month’s billing cycle.
(f) Energy credits produced pursuant to paragraph (8)(e) shall accumulate and be used to offset the customer’s energy usage in subsequent months for a period of not more than twelve months. At the end of each calendar year, the investor-owned utility shall pay the customer for any unused energy credits at an average annual rate based on the investor-owned utility’s COG-1, as-available energy tariff.
(g) When a customer leaves the system, that customer’s unused credits for excess kWh generated shall be paid to the customer at an average annual rate based on the investor-owned utility’s COG-1, as-available energy tariff.
(h) Regardless of whether excess energy is delivered to the investor-owned utility’s electric grid, the customer shall continue to pay the applicable customer charge and applicable demand charge for the maximum measured demand during the billing period. The investor-owned utility shall charge for electricity used by the customer in excess of the generation supplied by customer-owned renewable generation at the investor-owned utility’s otherwise applicable rate schedule. The customer may at their sole discretion choose to take service under the investor-owned utility’s standby or supplemental service rate, if available.
(9) Renewable Energy Certificates. Customers shall retain any Renewable Energy Certificates associated with the electricity produced by their customer-owned renewable generation equipment. Any additional meters necessary for measuring the total renewable electricity generated for the purposes of receiving Renewable Energy Certificates shall be installed at the customer’s expense, unless otherwise determined during negotiations for the sale of the customer’s Renewable Energy Certificates to the investor-owned utility.
(10) Reporting Requirements. Each electric utility, as defined in Section 366.02(2), F.S., shall file with the Commission as part of its tariff a copy of its Standard Interconnection Agreement form for customer-owned renewable generation. In addition, each electric utility shall report the following, by April 1 of each year.
(a) Total number of customer-owned renewable generation interconnections as of the end of the previous calendar year;
(b) Total kW capacity of customer-owned renewable generation interconnected as of the end of the previous calendar year;
(c) Total kWh received by interconnected customers from the electric utility, by month and by year for the previous calendar year;
(d) Total kWh of customer-owned renewable generation delivered to the electric utility, by month and by year for the previous calendar year; and
(e) Total energy payments made to interconnected customers for customer-owned renewable generation delivered to the electric utility for the previous calendar year, along with the total payments made since the implementation of this rule.
(f) For each individual customer-owned renewable generation interconnection:
- Renewable technology utilized;
- Gross power rating;
- Geographic location by county; and
- Date interconnected.
(11) Dispute Resolution. Parties may seek resolution of disputes arising out of the interpretation of this rule pursuant to Rule 25-22.032, F.A.C, Customer Complaints, or Rule 25-22.036, F.A.C., Initiation of Formal Proceedings.
Rulemaking Authority 350.127(2), 366.05(1), 366.92 FS. Law Implemented 366.02(2), 366.04(2)(c), (5), (6), 366.041, 366.05(1), 366.81, 366.82(1), (2), 366.91(1), (2), 366.92 FS. History–New 2-11-02, Amended 4-7-08.
AUTHORITY FOR SOLAR EASEMENTS (Section 704.07, Florida Statute)
704.07 Solar easements; creation; remedies.–
(1) Easements obtained for the purpose of maintaining exposure of a solar energy device shall be created in writing and shall be subject to being recorded and indexed in the same manner as any other instrument affecting the title to real property. Solar easements may be preserved and protected from extinguishment by the filing of a notice in the form and in accordance with the provisions set forth in ss. 712.05 and 712.06.
(2) In addition to fulfilling the requirements of law relating to conveyance of interests in land, the instrument creating the solar easement shall include:
(a) A description of the properties, servient and dominant.
(b) The vertical and horizontal angles, expressed in degrees, at which the solar easement extends over the real property subject to the solar easement.
(c) A description of where the easement falls across the servient property in relation to existing boundaries and various setbacks established by the local zoning authority.
(d) The point on the dominant property from where the angles describing the solar easement are to be measured.
(e) Terms or conditions under which the solar easement is granted or will terminate.
(f) Any provisions for compensation of the owner of the property benefiting from the solar easement in the event of interference with the enjoyment of the solar easement or compensation of the owner of the property subject to the solar easement for maintaining the solar easement.
(3) No structure under construction on October 1, 1978, shall be subject to any solar easement recorded pursuant to this section.