Clark Public Utilities Solar Program Overview
For Clark County residents, it’s now easier than ever to install a home solar energy system and save money on energy bills thanks to Clark County PUD solar incentives.
Who is Clark Public Utilities?
As a customer-owned entity, Clark Public Utilities has provided electricity and water service to Clark County since 1938. They have a service area of over 600 miles and more than 211,000 customers currently. As a public utility, they are committed to being excellent stewards of the community’s natural and financial resources and providing affordable electricity and water service.
What Incentives Are Offered in Clark County?
There are several solar incentives that you can take advantage of to lower the upfront cost of your solar energy system, recoup your investment faster, and even earn money from your system.
The federal government offers an investment tax credit on new solar energy systems that allows you to deduct 26% of the total cost of installation from your federal tax liability amount for the year. You can also roll over unused credit to subsequent years if necessary, for as long as the incentive program is still active.
This program was recently extended in December 2020, and the deduction amount is set to remain at 26% until the end of 2022, drop to 22% in 2023, and be eliminated for homeowners in 2024 (commercial solar system owners will be able to deduct 10% in 2024 and beyond).
Clark Public Utilities offers low-interest solar loans of up to $30,000 for their customers. All financing has an interest rate of 3.5% and the loan amount is capped at $5,000 for manufactured home owners. Loans for less than $10,000 are repayable over 5 years and those over $10,000 are repayable over 7 years, but all monthly payments must be at least $25. Only solar installations done by a licensed, bonded contractor within CPU’s contractor network are eligible for loans.
In Washington state as of July 1, 2019, all solar equipment for systems smaller than 100 kilowatts in size is exempt from state sales and use taxes. This can be significant instant savings.
Net Metering Production Credits
Clark Public Utilities offers net metering to customers with solar energy systems less than 100 kilowatts in size. This program allows you to essentially store excess energy that your panels produce in the utility grid. You will need to do some additional steps in order to take advantage of this incentive, such as completing an interconnection agreement, an inspection by a utility representative, and the installation of a special two-way electricity meter.
When your solar panels produce more energy that you can use at any one time, the excess feeds into the grid. But, when your solar panels are not producing as much energy as you need, your home will still pull in grid energy. The meter will be measuring the total energy your panels have sent into the grid and how much energy you pulled from the grid.
If, at the end of the month, you have put more energy into the grid than you took, you will be credited for the difference on your CPU account. If your panels fed some energy into the grid but you used more grid energy for the month, you will only pay for the difference.
This program allows you to store the excess in the grid for later use, and to take advantage of every watt that your solar panels produce. In this way, you can keep your energy costs low throughout the year by applying credits from high solar production months to the bills of low solar production months.
If you own a rural business, you may be able to take advantage of the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) grants and loans to help you make the transition to solar energy and make other sustainable energy and efficiency upgrades.
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