(last update: 6/24/21)
CMLP offers two different rebate programs providing thousands of dollars towards the cost of installing solar panels at your home or business. You’ll want to take advantage of both programs, if your system meets eligibility requirements.
1) MLP Solar Program Rebate: Offers a one-time incentive of $1,200 per kW(DC) of solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity installed, capped at 50% of system cost or $30,000, whichever is less. This incentive is funded through matching contributions of $600 per kW(DC) from CMLP and from the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER). Residential and commercial arrays of 25 kW(DC) or less installed by customers in good standing are eligible. Note the bolded deadlines in Steps B2 and D1 that rebate applicants must meet in order to receive this incentive.
If all MLP Solar Program applications submitted so far to CMLP are approved by the state, our pledge money will be overprescribed. We will post information here when we know more. The state rebate is not reserved until step C3 below. Please see step B2 below for deadline information. Funding for CMLP's solar rebate (see below) will continue, regardless of the state program. CMLP does not have any penalties for solar applicants that do not complete their installation.
2) CMLP Solar PV Rebate: Offers an additional one-time rebate of $625 per kW(DC) of installed solar PV generation capacity, capped at $3,125 per service address. Residential installations up to 167 kW(AC) and commercial installations of any size are eligible. There is no expiration date anticipated for this rebate.
***IMPORTANT NOTE: If your property already has or you are considering installing a sub-meter - such as for an EV (electric vehicle), winter electric heating rate, etc. - please read this page and its sub-pages to familiarize yourself with the options and trade-offs when combining sub-meters with solar panels.***
Steps to Installing Solar
Here are the steps to apply for both rebates and install solar at your home or business. If you are applying for the CMLP Solar PV Rebate only, you can skip steps A1, B1, C2-3, and G1-7. The 11 relevant steps for you are: A2-3, B2, C1, D1-3, E1-3, and F1. If you are applying for both the MLP Solar Program Rebate and the CMLP Solar PV Rebate, all 22 steps below are relevant for you.
A. Explore Options & Sign a Contract:
- Learn about the MLP Solar Program, which is administered for CMLP by Energy New England (ENE). Click here for an overview of the program and steps for getting started.
- We recommend that you solicit proposals from at least three solar installers for your new solar PV system. You’ll find information to help you with this step at ENE’s MLP Solar Program website and at CMLP’s Lease/Buy/Choose an Installer webpage. People who’ve already installed solar are also a good source of information about installer performance. Check online reviews, talk with people you know, or ask CMLP’s Energy Specialist Pamela Cady (email@example.com or (978) 318-3149) to put you in touch with Concord homeowners or businesses who’ve installed solar and volunteered to coach others.
- When soliciting proposals from solar installers, tell them you are interested in applying for an MLP Solar Program Rebate and the CMLP Solar PV Rebate. Confirm that they’re familiar with the PV system and production meter design, installation, and equipment criteria for the MLP Solar Program and the CMLP Solar PV Rebate and interconnection requirements outlined in the next step.
B. Submit Interconnection Application with Related Documents:
- MLP Solar Program Rebate documents required by DOER, to be uploaded by the installer via the online portal by 6/30/2021. An email from firstname.lastname@example.org with "application received" in the subject line marks successful completion of this step.
- MLP Solar Program Rebate Application
- Participant’s Agreement
- Proof of property ownership (deed or recent tax bill)
- Copy of contract between installer and homeowner / business owner
- Shade analysis
(DOER-approved shading tools can be found in Contractor Packet or Program Manual)
- CMLP Solar PV Rebate and interconnection documents to be emailed by the installer to CMLP
(if applying for the state's MLP Solar Program rebate, the installer must email the following 6 items to CMLP by 6/7/2021):
- Residential or Commercial Interconnection Application, with or without battery
(or Battery-Only Supplement for buildings with a pre-existing solar array)
- CMLP Solar PV Rebate Application
- CMLP Solar PV Rebate Terms and Conditions
- Residential or Commercial Net Metering Policy Acknowledgement
- Wiring diagram
- Specification sheets for all equipment
(i.e. solar PV panels, inverters, and (if applicable) energy storage systems)
- (Note: Installer must file for separate permits with Concord’s Building Department)
- Residential or Commercial Interconnection Application, with or without battery
C. Approval to Install from CMLP (all applications) & DOER (for MLP Solar Program rebate application):
- CMLP staff reviews paperwork and, if all requirements are met, sends Town's signed Approval to Install document to property owner, installer, and ENE. (Note: Current CMLP electrical distribution system limitations may preclude the installation of solar arrays over 25 kW without an accompanying energy storage system. Decisions are made on a case by case basis after engineering review.) (If applying for the state's MLP Solar Program rebate, this must be completed by CMLP by 6/30/2021.) An email from CMLP with "Approval to Install" in the subject line marks successful completion of this step.
- ENE reviews paperwork, submits completed Rebate Request package to DOER by mid-July 2021, and notifies customer and installer. An email from email@example.com with "submitted to the DOER for award reservation" in the subject line marks successful completion of this step.
- DOER emails Award Notification to homeowner and installer by August 2021 or when funds run out, whichever is earlier. This serves as the state's Approval to Install. An email from firstname.lastname@example.org with "Notification of Award Reservation" in the subject line marks successful completion of this step.
D. Install Equipment:
- Solar PV panels installed on property
(if applying for the state's MLP Solar Program rebate, this must be completed by the installer by 6/9/2022)
- Town Building Department's Wiring Inspector visits site to give approval.
- CMLP's Electrician, triggered by Building Department's approval email, installs "send and receive" meter
(a brief power outage is required; new meter installed next to solar meter; property owner does not need to be on site)
E. Approval to Operate from CMLP:
- CMLP Engineer conducts final project review (on-site visit not usually needed)
- CMLP emails signed Approval to Operate document to property owner & installer
(if applying for the state's MLP Solar Program rebate, this must be completed by CMLP by 6/30/2022.) An email from CMLP with "Approval to Operate" in the subject line marks successful completion of this step.
- Property owner begins generating their own power!
F. Receive Your CMLP Solar PV Rebate:
- Property owner receives one-time check by mail from Town of Concord for CMLP Solar PV Rebate (if rebate check requested rather than on-bill credit). This arrives 4 – 6 weeks after Approval to Operate email.
(See step G6 below for MLP Solar Program Rebate check information)
G. Receive Your MLP Solar Program Rebate from CMLP & DOER:
- Installer uploads the following MLP Solar Program Validation Request documents here. An email from email@example.com with "project completion documents received" in the subject line accompanies this step.
- Copy of CMLP’s Approval to Operate email (see step E2 above)
- CMLP interconnection agreement, with approval to operate signature (attached to CMLP email - see step E2 above)
- Project Completion Form (provided by DOER upon reservation of award - see step C3 above)
- Photographs of both:
- Locus meter powered on
- Legible meter ID#
- Locus Meter Connection Form
- Change Request Form (if applicable)
- Installer Invoice
- ENE reviews Validation Request documents and requests more information from installer if needed.
- ENE submits Validation Request documents to DOER for payment approval. An email from firstname.lastname@example.org with "completion forms sent to DOER" in the subject line marks successful completion of this step.
- DOER approves the MLP Solar Program rebate, with email notification sent to customer, installer, and CMLP.
- ENE invoices both DOER and CMLP for the MLP Solar Program Rebate funds.
- After funds are received, ENE mails two MLP Solar Program rebate checks to customer - one check representing CMLP's portion and one representing the state's portion. An email from email@example.com with "rebate payment is in the mail" in the subject line accompanies this step.
- ENE connects Locus meter and provides CMLP, installer, and customer with access.
If you have any questions, please contact:
Concord Municipal Light Plant
PO Box 1029
1175 Elm Street
Concord, MA 01742
ATTN: Pamela Cady
firstname.lastname@example.org (Note: best method during Covid)