2023 Maryland Solar Legislative Updates

The Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN) process is a comprehensive siting permit issued by the Public Service Commission for power plants over 2MW. It preempts local zoning. HB 692 clarifies that counties must issue permits required by a CPCN in a reasonable time, even if the project doesn't have local zoning approval. This should help move projects forward. HB 1188 codifies the existing practice that co-located solar projects under 2MW each don't need a CPCN. It limits co-location to 14MW total and clarifies projects can't export to the wholesale market. HB 1188 also codifies agricultural net metering into statute. It expands eligibility to state government and higher education institutions. Overall, the new legislation provides more certainty for solar developers around the CPCN process and co-location, which should facilitate development.