solar panels cause clashes with homeowner groups

by:Tunto     2020-03-05
CUMMING, Ga. —
The government wants you to install solar panels in your home and even give you tax breaks.
But what about your neighbors? Maybe not.
Angel and David Dobbs discovered this after the North Atlanta Households Association rejected their request to install solar panels on their roofs.
Community officials say that in a community where details such as the color of roof tiles, tree planting and storage of trash cans are tightly regulated, these panels do not look appropriate and may reduce family value.
\"It\'s like living under communism. --
Somebody can control everything you do, \"said David Dobbs.
Household associations across the country have banned or severely restricted the installation of solar panels, and the solar industry has postponed the end of this practice.
A recent attempt to expand the use of solar energy in Georgia was supported by environmentalists and some Republican lawmakers, who feared private property rights but were opposed by developers and real estate brokers.
According to a database run by North Carolina State University, about 20 states now prohibit or restrict the use of solar panels by owners\'associations or local governments.
Similar disputes have led to lawsuits in Nebraska and California.
Angel and David Dobbs supported Georgia\'s legislation after the election. -
Cooperate with Owners Association.
David Dobbs believes the project is his personal contribution to preventing global warming.
Leaders of the Lake Camingwickley Owners Association say the focus of the debate is on architecture and aesthetics, not the merits of solar energy.
Households will automatically accept community rules when they buy a house there.
Jim Pearson, president of the association, said: \"We\'re not going to discuss whether it\'s a good idea to have green energy. \"
As more and more people install solar energy systems, these debates may continue to erupt because solar equipment is becoming cheaper and the cost of government subsidies is increasing.
Taxpayers can now deduct 30% of the cost of installing solar panels from their federal tax receipts.
Other state and local governments offer additional incentives.
This battle is not new.
Some solar laws date back to the 1970s, while other states have recently added similar measures.
California\'s law, first enacted in 1978, prohibits owners\'associations from forcing residents to make aesthetic changes to photovoltaic panels, which could increase costs by more than $2,000 or reduce system efficiency by more than 20%.
Most disputes in California are settled privately, but some have entered the court system.
Last year, an appeals court in California upheld a ruling that forced a couple to remove solar panels installed in their yard without the approval of the homeowners\'association.
They were allowed to keep other panels on the roof.
\"They don\'t like what they look like,\" says lawyer Michael McQueen, who represents the couple and others in similar disputes. \"And (
Association of Owners)
It\'s all about appearance.
Is your lawn green?
Have you trimmed your hedge yet?
Ricardo Cestro, a lawyer for the Home Owners Association, says community leaders are concerned about local conditions. -
Horizontal boards are not placed far enough from the street, are not adequately protected from damage and may cause corrosion.
Texas passed a law last year banning owners\'associations from using solar panels altogether.
The law clearly stipulates that residents can install it on roofs or fences. -
In courtyards or patios, there are certain restrictions.
In Georgia, the struggle between Derbis and their homeowners\'associations began in 2010.
David Dobbs says the rules require him and his wife to seek permission to build solar panels.
He first proposed installing 30 panels in two areas parallel to the roof slope.
One can see three parts. -by-five-
They use footboards when walking or driving in the street.
The owners\'Association rejected the request, and the other three came from DOBS.
Board member Jim Graham said approval might require placing the panels out of sight, or installing them in the backyard and being fenced off. --
Although the fence is also approved by the association.
If people don\'t like the rules, they can buy them anywhere else, Graham said.
\"They chose to enter the community,\" he said.
Legislators in Georgia are trying to solve this problem through legislation that will allow owners\'associations to decide whether to ban solar panels for the rest of the year.
No community that has not enacted a ban by next year will be able to prevent homeowners from installing solar panels in the future.
This is limited.
Homeowners\'associations can confine panels to roofs or fence them up. -
In the backyard and yard.
They may need to install solar panels parallel to roof slopes and prohibit any backyard solar equipment above the surrounding fence.
Even in states that give owners the right to install solar panels, owners\'associations still prohibit the installation of solar panels.
Community leaders in Salem, Oregon.
Lorman said the company rejected Larry Lorman\'s request to install solar panels on the roof because their regulations prohibited such devices.
He successfully argued that it was illegal to ban the use of solar panels under a solar rights law of 1979, and that he and a neighbor helped the association draft guidelines for the installation of solar panels.
In 2010, his panels began to install and generate electricity, although Lochman said he had abandoned the job almost because of frustration during the year when he wrote new guidelines for homeowners\'associations.
\"They\'re just worried that someone will put up with this huge, buzzing, reflecting light, ugly thing,\" he said. ------
Associated Press reporter Kate Bloombark contributed to the report. ------
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