Sign the Petition to Save GoSolarSF!

By: Phil Ting

Save SoSolarSF - Sign the Petition!In a city where too many government programs don’t work as well as they should, there are still shining exceptions. And no government program shines brighter than San Francisco’s solar incentive program, GoSolarSF.

This first-of-a-kind local solar program that launched in 2008 has helped propel San Francisco from laggard to leader in rooftop solar installations. The program has quadrupled the number of solar roofs in the city, created scores of new green jobs, and attracted nearly a dozen new solar companies to San Francisco, helping to solidify our status as an emerging capital of the green economy.

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So you would think that such a stellar success would be expanding?

Unfortunately, you would be wrong.

San Francisco is Now Proposing to Cut One of the Nation’s Most Successful Green Programs

As hard as it is to believe, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission has proposed a 40% cut in the program’s funding.

That’s right. One of the most successful environmental and green job programs in San Francisco is now facing drastic cuts. In tough times, tough choices have to be made - but this is when it is most important to invest in the future.

Resetting San Francisco Means Responding to the Facts

The founding principle of the Reset San Francisco community is that if we want to make our city better we need to make our city government better. And better government needs to start with responding to data that shows us what’s working – and do more of that.  And we need to be respectful of facts that show what’s not working – and free up time and money for successful efforts by ending the unsuccessful and wasteful government endeavors.

In the case of the solar incentive program, we have a data stream that shows incredible success. So let's fully embrace the principles of Gov 2.0 – and use this data to keep such a successful economic and environmental program.

Help Keep San Francisco as a Leader in the Green Economy

The most recent data show that in just two years the program has helped create more than 5 megawatts of new green solar power at an upfront cost of just $10 million in city solar incentives. Data from my office shows that once the new solar homes are sold, the city gains more than $2,000 per home in increased property taxes because homes with solar are more valuable. Of course residents who are saving up to hundreds of dollars each month on their utility bills have more to spend in our local economy. And the new green economy companies, and their green collar employees, add to economic activity.

In other words, this is an investment that is more than paying for itself.

GoSolarSF is High Impact – at Low Cost

Let’s look at another metric. The city has estimated the cost of the 5 MW Sunset Reservoir solar installation at $40 million.

GoSolarSF has itself helped create 5MW of new solar power – for $10 million.

It is sad that somehow this does not seem surprising. That we would happily promote spending $40 million to get what an innovative public private partnership is creating for a quarter on the dollar.

So what do we do?

We need the Reset San Francisco Community to help us save this incredible program.

Please Sign the Petition to Save GoSolarSF

We are respectfully asking Mayor Ed Lee to work with the PUC and restore the program
– in full.

The original program was itself an organizational challenge. But thanks to the great work of people on the San Francisco Solar Task Force, which I was honored to co-chair, the program was launched. The work of co-chair David Hochschild and community leaders like Guillermo Rodriguez, John Rizzo, Michael Bernstein, Barry Cinnamon and Jeanine Cotter was also instrumental.

We fought hard to create this incredibly successful program. Now, we need to fight just as hard to keep it.

Help us keep San Francisco a leader in the green economy.

Please sign our petition today. 

Paid for by Phil Ting for Assembly 2012. FPPC ID# 1343137