Solar Panel Mandate Displaces 150,000 Home Buyers

Solar panelsWhile Democrats in the state Legislature and Governor Jerry Brown debate how to spend our state’s budget surplus, they continue to push policies that bust the budgets of ordinary California families.

The California Energy Commission’s mandate that all new homes in California include a minimum $10,000 solar panel system is the latest such attack. With this mandate, the governor’s hand-picked commission has priced out 150,000 California homebuyers.

Why? Because the National Association of Home Builders says that for every $1,000 increase in the price of a home, 15,000 buyers are priced out of the market. So this one action by the Energy Commission will shut out 150,000 Californians from buying a home.

And even that $10,000 is a shameful government fiction. New solar arrays average more than $19,000 in California now, and larger homes could cost double that. California’s “solar tax” could be forcing hundreds of thousands of people into a permanent renter class and barring the door to the American Dream.

With the new gas-tax forcing prices up toward $4 a gallon, “cap-and-trade” taxes pushing electricity rates 50-percent higher than the national average, and the cost of renting or buying a home continuing to spiral out of control, the once Golden State now is home to a quarter of the nation’s homeless population – 134,000 people who can’t afford to have a roof over their heads – solar or not.

This isn’t how our government is supposed to work. Your state and local representative is supposed to figure out ways to make life better for their community, not come up with umpteen-hundred ways to see just how much more money they can pluck from your wallet.

The solar panel mandate is just one more example of the Democrats’ endless experiments in social engineering.

You deserve better than this.

State Senator Ted Gaines represents the people of the 1st Senate District, which includes all or parts of Alpine, El Dorado, Lassen, Modoc, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sacramento, Shasta, Sierra and Siskiyou counties. He currently serves as the vice chair of the Senate Insurance and Environmental Quality Committees. He is also a member of the Transportation and Housing and the Governmental Organization Committees.