Broward County Creates New Solar Contractor Specialty Category to Support Solar Installation Needs
  
  
DATE: March 25, 2013
MEDIA CONTACT: Armando Linares, Deputy Director
Environmental Protection and Growth Management Department
PHONE: 954-357-6602
EMAIL:
alinares@broward.org  

Broward County has amended its Code of Ordinances to create a new specialty builder category for solar contractors. The new classification took effect in January and supports a growing “green building” industry in Broward by establishing certification and licensing requirements for contractors installing solar energy systems.

Classification Description
Solar Contractor. — Class "CV": A solar contractor means a contractor whose services consist of the installation, alteration, repair, maintenance, relocation, or replacement of solar panels for potable solar water heating systems, swimming pool solar heating systems, and photovoltaic systems and any appurtenances, apparatus, or equipment used in connection therewith, whether public, private, or otherwise, regardless of use. A contractor, certified or registered pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 489, Florida Statutes, is not required to become a certified or registered solar contractor or to contract with a solar contractor in order to provide any services enumerated in this paragraph that are within the scope of the services such contractors may render under Part I of Chapter 489, Florida Statutes. In order to be eligible to be certified as a Class "CV" specialty building contractor by the board, the applicant shall have at least four (4) years of practical experience in the category.

Requirements for Certification:
• Experience must be in the field of the license category.
• An applicant for the solar contractor license must have experience verified by a licensed contractor in the following categories: General Building Residential Solar and Pool/Spa (Commercial or Residential).

Solar Contractor License:
• Scope of work covers residential and commercial solar water heating, solar pool heating and photovoltaic systems.
• Is exempt from subcontracting certain roofing, plumbing and electrical work on residential installations.
• May be required to subcontract roofing, plumbing and electrical work on commercial installations if required by the building department.
• May only operate within the County issuing the license unless reciprocity granted.

Other license categories authorized to install solar energy systems include:

Plumbing Contractors
• Can install residential and commercial solar water and pool heating systems.
• May be required to subcontract roofing and electrical work if required by the building. department.
• Cannot call themselves "Solar Contractors."

Pool and Spa Contractors
• Can install residential and commercial "packaged" pool heating systems.
• Solar pool heating systems have been defined in an Attorney General Opinion as packaged pool heaters.
• May be required to subcontract roofing, electrical and plumbing tasks.
• Cannot call themselves "Solar Contractors."

Electrical Contractors
• Can install residential and commercial PV systems.
• Regulated by the Electrical Contractors Licensing Board.
• May be required to subcontract roofing tasks if required by the building department.
• Cannot call themselves "Solar Contractors."

The emphasis on solar energy systems is part of the Broward Go SOLAR Rooftop Challenge, a U.S. Department of Energy grant-funded program, designed to make solar power more accessible to local residents and business owners and/or their contractors, by streamlining the online application system and offering standardized fees and uniform interconnection to utility systems. Broward County is one of only 22 governments in the nation to receive funding from the Department of Energy for this initiative.

For more information on the Solar Contractor Licensing Category, visit broward.org/permittingandlicensing or call 954-765-4400 Option 2. For more information on the Go SOLAR Rooftop Challenge, visit broward.org/GoGreen and click Go SOLAR.

 
 
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