Today's Law As Amended

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AB-546 Land use: local ordinances: energy systems.(2017-2018)



SECTION 1.
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) It is the policy of the state to promote and encourage the installation of advanced energy storage and to limit obstacles to its use.
(b) It is further the intent of the Legislature that the applicable state agencies, including the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research, extend and expand the existing initiative being conducted by the Public Utilities Commission to further note best practices in the safe permitting of advanced energy storage.
(c) That implementation of consistent statewide standards to achieve the timely and cost-effective installation of energy storage systems is not a municipal affair, but is a matter of statewide concern.

SEC. 2.

 Section 65850.8 is added to the Government Code, to read:

65850.8.
 (a) (1) On or before September 30, 2018, every city, including a charter city, county, or city and county with a population of 200,000 or more residents, and on or before January 31, 2019, every city, including a charter city, county, or city and county with a population of less than 200,000 residents, shall make all documentation and forms associated with the permitting of advanced energy storage available on a publicly accessible Internet Web site, if the city, county, or city and county has an Internet Web site.
(2) The city, county, or city and county shall allow for electronic submission of a permit application and associated documentation. The city, county, or city and county shall also authorize the electronic signature on all forms, applications, and other documentation in lieu of a wet signature by an applicant, unless the city, county, or city and county determines that it is unable to accept an electronic signature on all forms, applications, and other documents and makes a finding that states the reasons for that inability.
(b) The Governor’s Office of Planning and Research may, in consultation with local building officials, the State Fire Marshal, the storage industry, labor representatives from the utility and construction industries, licensed electrical contractors, electrical corporations, publicly owned utilities, the Public Utilities Commission, and other stakeholders, provide guidance on energy storage permitting, including streamlining, best practices, and potential factors for consideration by local government in establishing fees for permitting and inspection.
(c) For purposes of this section, the following terms have the following meanings:
(1) “Advanced energy storage” means an energy storage system, as defined in Section 2835 of the Public Utilities Code, as well as an energy storage system that is designed to provide backup energy services in the event of a grid outage, that is limited to both of the following:
(A) Electrochemical energy storage in nonventing packages.
(B) Customer-sited installations.
(2) “Customer sited” means the system is interconnected to the electrical grid through an existing retail customer interconnection.
(3) “Electronic submittal” means the utilization of one or more of the following:
(A) Email.
(B) The Internet.
(C) Facsimile.
SEC. 3.
 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because a local agency or school district has the authority to levy service charges, fees, or assessments sufficient to pay for the program or level of service mandated by this act, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code.