Rooftop solar panel costs skyrocket

Oregon Energy Department cuts a tax credit for installing rooftop solar panels to save taxpayers money.

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The Oregon Energy Department enacted a rule on July 1 that cuts a tax credit for installing residential rooftop solar panels.

The Department says the rule is intended to decrease the residential-energy-tax-credit program’s impact on the state’s General Fund.

A 2,000-watt solar system that once cost a homeowner about $650, after credits and a rebate, will now cost about $3,325, Oregon Energy Department officials confirm.

That could still strike some customers as a sunny deal — and hit subsidy opponents as a blinding giveaway. But installers say the price hike will kill projects.

“This rule change is going to create a screeching halt to solar on homes,” said Jeff Friedman, vice president of LiveLight Energy, a Beaverton-based installer. “I don’t think anybody in government really realized the impact of this change.”


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