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Utility-Backed Florida Group Announces Solar Amendment Slogan

Solar panels at Jefferson County Middle High School in north Florida
Solar panels at Jefferson County Middle High School in north Florida

A group seeking to put existing solar energy regulations into the state constitution expects to spend millions of dollars in the coming months to promote the utility-backed amendment.

The group known as "Consumers for Smart Solar" announced a slogan: "Yes on 1 for the Sun." There were few other details released about the upcoming campaign during a news conference in Tallahassee.

The proposal, for which the group has already raised and spent more than $7 million to get the amendment on the ballot, will appear as Amendment 1 in the November general election.

The campaign is expected to focus on allowing state and local governments to maintain consumer protections.

Screven Watson, a Consumers for Smart Solar board member, defends the effort as a means to keep questionable "out-of-state" companies from being able to operate in Florida.

“The bottom line is that Amendment One will advance solar, and it will do it in the right way… a way that protects consumers and the public," Watson said. "It was put on the ballot with over one million signatures in five months.”

The amendment was introduced last year to counter a separate ballot proposal that sought to allow businesses to generate and sell up to two megawatts of power to customers on the same or neighboring properties.

The group behind that effort, "Floridians For Solar Choice," failed to collect the needed signatures to get on the 2016 ballot and is now looking at the 2018 election.

All amendments require support from more than 60 percent of the voters to pass.