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Forum News Service, Published March 18 2014

Minnesota bill would prevent bans on rooftop solar panels

ST. PAUL - Homeowner associations could not ban homeowners from installing solar energy systems on roofs of their homes under a bill making its way through the Legislature.

The bill by Rep. Will Morgan, D-Burnsville, has passed one committee. A similar Senate bill awaits a committee hearing.

Under current law, homeowner associations regulate the appearance of the exterior of homes. Morgan's proposal would remove associations' authority to ban solar panels.

The bill is in response to a 2013 law encouraging the use of solar power.

Morgan said his bill is similar to a law that allows townhouse owners to install satellite television dishes and flagpoles.