Bill Summaries: S802 C-PACE PROGRAM.

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  • Summary date: Jul 9 2024 - View Summary


  • Summary date: Jun 26 2024 - View Summary

    House amendment #1 to the 3rd edition adds the following new content.

    Section 5.1

    Contains findings. Repeals GS 143-215.1(c8) (pertaining to permitted discharges of highly treated domestic wastewater). Repeals Section 12.9 of SL 2023-134. By August 1, 2024, directs the Department of Environmental Quality (Department) and the Environmental Management Commission (Commission) to develop and submit to the EPA for its approval draft rules that establish methodologies and permitting requirements for the discharge of treated domestic wastewaters with low risk following site-specific criteria to surface waters of the State, including wetlands, perennial streams, and unnamed tributaries of named and classified streams and intermittent streams or drainage courses where the 7Q10 flow or 30Q2 flow of the receiving water is estimated to be low flow or zero flow, or under certain conditions non-existent, as determined by the United States Geological Survey (USGS). Requires the Commission to begin the process of temporary and permanent rules under the APA within twenty days of EPA approval.  Requires the draft rules to contain the following: (1) three defined terms and (2) criteria for permitting that require applicants to demonstrate through the specified analysis that a proposed discharge meets criteria for a low-risk discharge and that discharges low flow or zero flow receiving waters be subject to the listed conditions. By September 1, 2024, requires the Department, in conjunction with the North Carolina Collaboratory at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (Collaboratory), to convene a Wastewater General Permit Working Group (Working Group) consisting of Department and Collaboratory staff and a maximum of five consulting experts appointed by the Director of the Collaboratory in the fields of environmental regulation, wastewater regulation, water quality regulation, and wastewater treatment regulation, to develop the draft rules for the implementation of a Wastewater Treatment and Discharge General Permit process for the State. Requires the Working Group to report its findings to the Environmental Review Commission (ERC) by March 15, 2025. Following consideration by the ERC, and after making any changes required by the ERC, the Department must develop and submit proposed rules to the EPA for its approval. Within 20 days of the date the EPA approves the draft rules submitted, directs the Commission to initiate the process for temporary and permanent rules pursuant to GS Chapter 150B (the APA). Provides for quarterly reports by the Department and Commission to the specified NCGA committees and the ERC starting on September 1, 2024, and continuing until the permanent rules are adopted.  

  • Summary date: Jun 11 2024 - View Summary

    Senate committee substitute to the 2nd edition makes the following changes.

    Amends the definitions of C-PACE toolkit, qualifying improvement, and renewable energy measure.

    Now requires the statewide administrator to prepare a C-PACE toolkit with stakeholders and local governments subject to approval of program sponsor (was, in consultation with local governments and the program sponsor) under GS 160A-239.14 (administration of statewide C-PACE program). Amends the process for reviewing and evaluating C-PACE applications as follows. For existing buildings, changes the required conservation results so that it also includes conservation of energy that meets or exceeds then-existing State and federal building codes and efficiency standards or conservation codes. Adds a requirement for existing or new buildings, that there be certification by a licensed engineering firm or engineer that all available electric public utility energy efficiency and demand response programs available to property owners and any tenants thereof have been evaluated prior to applying for C-PACE financing. Makes technical changes.

    Adds requirement to GS 160A-239.18 (concerning financing) that the total amount of financing of the qualifying improvement secured by the property does not exceed 35% of the value of the property. Provides for a calculation of value.

    Amends GS 105-376(b) (concerning payment of purchase price by taxing units) so that any taxing unit purchasing property at foreclosure sale under GS 105-376 by paying full purchase price, takes the property subject to liens arising from C-PACE assessments, in addition to the other encumbrances listed.

    Removes provisions appropriating $50,000 from the General Fund to the Department of Commerce to develop the C-PACE toolkit. Makes organizational changes. 

  • Summary date: May 28 2024 - View Summary

    Senate committee substitute to the 1st edition makes the following changes.

    Amends new Article 10B, titled the "Commercial Property Assessed Capital Expenditure and Resilience Act (C-PACE)," in GS Chapter 160A, as follows. Amends the C-PACE toolkit requirements under new GS 160A-239.14 so that: (1) the required form of notice of C-PACE assessment has to identify the qualified commercial property subject to the assessment, along with the property's owner's consent to that assessment; (2) the form of assignment of C-PACE lien is from the local government to the capital provider that cross-references the registry book and page number of the notice of C-PACE assessment giving rise to the lien; and (3) expands the type of lienholders that must consent to a C-PACE assessment to include those holding any other lien upon the qualifying commercial property (currently just holders of a mortgage or deed of trust). Changes references in GS 160A-239.14 from benefitted property to qualifying commercial property.  Expands the property owner's required certification so that the owner must certify that they are the holder of title in fee simple (currently just have to certify that they are the legal owner of the property), in addition to certifying that title is not in dispute. Removes the requirement that a C-PACE lien must be executed before the C-PACE assessment and lien documents are recorded in the appropriate office of the registrar of deeds. Makes clarifying changes.   

    Expands the required contents of the local government's resolution under new GS 160A-239.15 to include a statement of the place and time for a public hearing on the proposed C-PACE program. Specifies that if a local government seeking to participate in a C-PACE program is a city, the authorizing resolution is effective only with the concurrence of the governing body of the county in which the city is located. Amends the prong of the resolution containing the government's statement that it intends to authorize C-PACE financing so that it now requires the local government to state that it intends to authorize: (1)  C-PACE financing; (2) the imposition of C-PACE assessments on qualifying commercial properties benefitting from qualifying improvements to secure repayment of C-PACE financing; (3) assign the C-PACE lien to the capital provider providing C-PACE financing; and (4) delegate billing, collection, and enforcement duties for the C-PACE assessment and C-PACE lien to capital providers (was, statement must: authorize C-PACE financing, authorize the imposition of C-PACE assessments and C-PACE liens on qualifying commercial properties benefitting from qualifying  improvements to secure repayment of C-PACE financing, and assign the same  or the right to repayment proceeds to the capital provider providing C-PACE financing, and delegate billing, collection, and enforcement duties for the C-PACE assessment and C-PACE lien to capital provider). 

    Changes reference from payment of C-PACE lien to payment of C-PACE assessment in GS 160A-239.17. Now prevents the use of public funds to repay any C-PACE assessment under GS 160A-239.20 (was, prevents public funds from being used to repay any loan between a capital provider and property owner). Changes the conforming change to GS 105-375 (in rem foreclosures) to refer to liens arising from C-PACE assessments (was, just referred to the assessments). 

    Amends the Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) prong of the term minority business under GS 143-128.2(g) (concerning minority business participation goals) so that 51% of plan participants must be comprised of minority persons or socially and economically disadvantaged individuals (was, 51% of the ESOP stock must be owned by such persons).  Makes conforming changes and further amends GS 143-128.4 (defining historically underutilized businesses for purposes of statewide uniform certifications) to require an ESOP company applying for such certification to provide an attestation that it meets the requirements of the statute along with any required supporting documentation. 

    Makes organizational changes and conforming changes to the act's title. 

  • Summary date: May 6 2024 - View Summary

    Enacts Article 10B, titled the "Commercial Property Assessed Capital Expenditure and Resilience Act (C-PACE)," in GS Chapter 160A. Sets forth legislative findings and 15 defined terms. Defines qualified improvement to mean a permanent improvement that is affixed to a qualified commercial property (defined) and includes one of the following characteristics approved by the administrator, as described: energy efficiency measure; resiliency measure; renewable energy measure; and/or water conservation measure. Defines capital provider to mean a private entity, or the private entity's designee, successor, and assigns, that makes or funds qualifying improvements under the Article. 

    Authorizes the establishment of a statewide C-PACE program that local governments can voluntarily join to allow willing owners of certain properties to obtain low-cost, long-term financing for qualifying improvements including energy efficiency, water conservation, renewable energy, and resilience projects, secured by a recorded assessment and lien pursuant to the Article. Designates the Department of Commerce (DOC) as the program’s sponsor. Authorizes the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (Partnership) to serve as administrator of the C-PACE program with seven listed prongs of oversight responsibility, including preparing a C-PACE toolkit in consultation with local governments and the DOC, imposing fees to offset the actual and reasonable costs of administering C-PACE which are capped at $750 for application fees and $25,000 for processing fees for financed projects, establishing a process for reviewing and evaluating applications, accepting and approving applications for C-PACE financing, recording of liens or notice of assignments pertaining to C-PACE assessments and liens, and annual reports to DOC. Exempts the C-PACE toolkit and any actions of the Partnership or DOC in the administration of the program from GS Chapter 150B of the APA (rulemaking, hearings, judicial review).

    Requires local governments seeking to participate in the program to adopt a resolution with specified content including, (1) an authorization for the C-PACE program to operate within its jurisdictional boundaries, (2) its intent to participate in the program and take associated actions, and (3)statement that he amount of a C-PACE financing and related assessment repayment rems must be pursuant to the related financing agreement. Bars local government from receiving funds for repayment of C-PACE assessments and directs that if any such funds are received, they are considered custodial funds for the benefit of the capital provider. 

    Details procedures and requirements pertaining to State and local government immunity. Places sole enforcement responsibility upon the capital provider. Further provides for foreclosure procedure, parameters, and lien priority, with the C-PACE lien being inferior to all non-governmental liens on the property prior to the date on which the notice of the C-PACE lien was recorded, subject to mortgage holder consent. Details the effect of a C-PACE lien, deeming the lien to run with the land and be superior to all other liens from the date of recordation. Bars contesting matters regarding whether the lien is a qualified improvement, or financing procedural or substantive irregularities, following recordation of the C-PACE lien. 

    Provides a non-exhaustive list of permissible financing for assessments, including material and labor costs, permit fees, inspections fees, and capitalized interest. Restricts the term of financing to the weighted average useful life if multiple improvements are approved. Provides for financing negotiations and enforcement responsibilities.  

    Provides for prior consent of each holder of a mortgage or deed on the property securing indebtedness, required to be submitted to the Partnership, which also acknowledges that the assessment is not an event of default under the terms of the mortgage or deed. Specifies that financing arrangements can include direct purchases or contractual agreements. 

    Makes conforming and/or changes to GS 105-375 (in rem foreclosures) and GS 105-374 (foreclosure by tax lien). 

    Appropriates $50,000 from the General Fund to DOC in nonrecurring funds for the 2024-2025 fiscal year to allocate to the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina to develop the C-PACE toolkit.

    Effective July 1, 2024.