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An Act to amend and reenact 15.2-958.3 of the Code of Virginia, relating to clean energy programs.
[S 110]
Approved March 11, 2010


Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. That 15.2-958.3 of the Code of Virginia is amended and reenacted as follows:

15.2-958.3. Financing clean energy programs.

A. Any locality may, by ordinance, authorize contracts to provide loans for the initial acquisition and installation of clean energy improvements with free and willing property owners of both existing properties and new construction. Such an ordinance shall include but not be limited to the following:

1. The kinds of distributed generation renewable energy sources or energy efficiency improvements for which loans may be offered;

2. The proposed arrangement for such loan program, including (i) a statement concerning the source of funding that will be used to pay for work performed pursuant to the contracts; (ii) the interest rate and time period during which contracting property owners would repay the loan; and (iii) the method of apportioning all or any portion of the costs incidental to financing, administration, and collection of the arrangement among the consenting property owners and the locality;

3. A minimum and maximum aggregate dollar amount which may be financed;

4. A method for setting requests from property owners for financing in priority order in the event that requests appear likely to exceed the authorization amount of the loan program. Priority shall be given to those requests from property owners who meet established income or assessed property value eligibility requirements;

5. Identification of a local official authorized to enter into contracts on behalf of the locality; and

6. A draft contract specifying the terms and conditions proposed by the locality.

B. The locality may combine the loan payments required by the contracts with billings for water or sewer charges, real property tax assessments, or other billings; in such cases, the locality may establish the order in which loan payments will be applied to the different charges. The locality may not combine its billings for loan payments required by a contract authorized pursuant to this section with billings of another locality or political subdivision, including an authority operating pursuant to Chapter 51 ( 15.2-5100 et seq.), unless such locality or political subdivision has given its consent by duly adopted resolution or ordinance.

C. The locality shall offer private lending institutions the opportunity to participate in local loan programs established pursuant to this section.

D. In order to secure the loan authorized pursuant to this section, the locality shall be authorized to place a lien equal in value to the loan against any property where such clean energy systems are being installed. The locality may bundle or package said loans for transfer to private lenders in such a manner that would allow the liens to remain in full force to secure the loans.

D E. Prior to the enactment of an ordinance pursuant to this section, a public hearing shall be held at which interested persons may object to or inquire about the proposed loan program or any of its particulars. The public hearing shall be advertised once a week for two successive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the locality.

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