Bill Text: NY S04742 | 2019-2020 | General Assembly | Introduced

NOTE: There are more recent revisions of this legislation. Read Latest Draft
Bill Title: Relates to prohibiting homeowners' associations from restricting the installation of or use of solar power systems.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 8-0)

Status: (Engrossed) 2019-04-30 - referred to housing [S04742 Detail]

Download: New_York-2019-S04742-Introduced.html

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2019-2020 Regular Sessions
                    IN SENATE
                                     March 22, 2019
        Introduced by Sens. PARKER, BROOKS, KENNEDY, SEPULVEDA -- read twice and
          ordered  printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on
          Housing, Construction and Community Development
        AN ACT to amend the real property law, in relation to prohibiting  home-
          owners' associations from restricting the installation or use of solar
          power systems
          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section 1. The real property law is amended by adding  a  new  article
     2  9-C to read as follows:
     3                                  ARTICLE 9-C
     4                              SOLAR RIGHTS ACT
     5  Section 342. Certain covenants, conditions, and restrictions of homeown-
     6                 ers' associations prohibited.
     7    §  342. Certain covenants, conditions, and restrictions of homeowners'
     8  associations prohibited.  1.  Definitions.  For  the  purposes  of  this
     9  section:
    10    (a) "restriction on use" means any covenant, restriction, or condition
    11  contained in:
    12    (i) a deed;
    13    (ii) a contract;
    14    (iii) the by-laws of a homeowners' association;
    15    (iv) any rules or regulations adopted by a homeowners' association;
    16    (v) a security agreement; or
    17    (vi)  any  other  instrument affecting the transfer or sale of, or any
    18  interest in, real property.
    19    (b) "solar power system" means a photovoltaic  system,  comprising  of
    20  solar  electric  generating  equipment,  installed  on a rooftop, with a
    21  rated capacity of not more than twenty-five kilowatts.
    22    2. A homeowners' association may not adopt or  enforce  any  rules  or
    23  regulations  that  would  effectively  prohibit,  or impose unreasonable
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        S. 4742                             2
     1  limitations on, the installation or use  of  a  solar  power  system.  A
     2  restriction  on  use which effectively prohibits the installation or use
     3  of a solar power system is unenforceable and shall be void  as  contrary
     4  to  public policy. For the purposes of this subdivision, an unreasonable
     5  limitation includes, but is not limited to, any restriction on use that:
     6    (a) inhibits the solar power system from functioning at  its  intended
     7  maximum efficiency; or
     8    (b)  increases  the  solar  power system's installation or maintenance
     9  costs by an amount which is estimated to be greater than ten percent  of
    10  the  total  cost  of the initial installation of the solar power system,
    11  including the costs of labor and equipment.
    12    3. Notwithstanding subdivision two  of  this  section,  a  homeowners'
    13  association  may  adopt  or enforce a restriction on use to prohibit the
    14  installation of a solar power system that is located on  property  owned
    15  by  the  homeowners' association or that is located on property owned in
    16  common by the members of the homeowners' association.
    17    4. Any denial of a homeowner's installation of a solar power system by
    18  a homeowners' association must include a  detailed  description  of  the
    19  exact basis for rejection in writing with specific examples of the home-
    20  owners' association's concerns, if applicable.
    21    5.  A solar power system must meet the requirements established by any
    22  local, state or federal law, rule or regulation  on  health  and  safety
    23  standards  and  those requirements imposed by state and local permitting
    24  authorities.
    25    6. A person may bring a civil action in a court of competent jurisdic-
    26  tion for any violation of this section. In any action  brought  pursuant
    27  to  this section, the court may award the appropriate remedies and costs
    28  of litigation, including reasonable attorneys' fees, to  the  prevailing
    29  party.
    30    §  2.  This  act  shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall
    31  have become a law.