SMUD Approves Solar Home Incentives, New Transformers

By Published On: May 4, 2007

The Sacramento Municipal Utility District’s Board of Directors on May 2 approved $1 million in incentive payments to a local developer for 88 solar homes in three different communities. Currently, there are two such homes in the muni’s service district. But overall, SMUD – in partnership with local developers – plans to offer incentives for more than 1,200 super-energy-efficient solar homes, making the SolarSmart project one of the largest of its kind in the nation. The SolarSmart homes are being built with energy-efficient features and state-of-the-art rooftop solar electric systems. Those systems are expected to save homeowners up to 60 percent on an average electric bill. Compared to other new homes, the houses are expected to reduce carbon emissions by an amount equivalent to removing 620 cars from the roads or planting 980 acres of trees. The solar homes project is in response to the California Solar Initiative, the ten-year, multibillion-dollar incentive program aimed at creating 3,000 MW of new solar electric generating capacity by 2017. SMUD’s goal is to install 125 MW of solar by 2015. The board also approved a five-year contract for up to $59 million with Cooper Power Systems to supply and maintain distribution transformers. The new contract will succeed the current contract between the two entities, which expires in June. The board also heard about the muni’s financial situation from the utility district’s finance committee chair, who gave a report on the statement for the three-month period ending March 31. The muni’s actual revenue was $238.4 million, slightly short of its budgeted revenue of $239.4 million. Actual expenditures of $254 million exceeded projected expenses of $234.6 million.

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