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Solar-Use Easements

Senate Bill 618

Senate Bill 618 (Statutes of 2011, Chapter 596) authorizes the parties to a Land Conservation (Williamson) Act or Farmland Security Zone contract, after an eligibility determination and management plan review, to mutually agree to rescind a contract (or a portion of) in order to simultaneously enter into a solar-use easement.  The new easement would require that the land be used for solar photovoltaic facilities for a term of 20 years, or if the landowner requests, for a term of not less than 10 years. 


The Department of Conservation established procedures, fees, standards, and criteria for solar-use easements, under regulations adopted early in 2014 (Title 14 of the California Code of Regulations).  The regulations clarify SB 618 language and the Department’s role in implementing the solar-use easement statute.  Through these procedures, solar-use easement agreements may be approved between cities or counties and agricultural landowners that are parties to Land Conservation and Farmland Security Zone Act contracts. 

The official text of the new regulations, the Statement of Reasons, and the Addendum to the Statement of Reasons are now available. 


Additional Information

The Department's general advice for interested parties: Senate Bill 618 – Advice for Applicants, Cities, and Counties, and the complete text of SB 618 (Wolk, Chapter 596, Statutes of 2011).

For additional information regarding Solar-Use Easements, or the Williamson Act Program, please call 916-324-0850, or email

Other Information That May Be of Assistance

For more information regarding the rulemaking process, please refer to the Office of Administrative Law.