New Jersey State Seal

Solar Activity Reports

Find a Solar Trade Ally

Solar Energy

Join Our Listserv

Follow Us:

Become a Facebook Fan!Follow us on Twitter!Follow us on Twitter!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): for Project Developers

Registration Process

1. Where can I find the Community Solar Energy (CSEP) rules?

The Board Order establishing the program is available here. The rule proposal is available here, with administrative corrections published here.

2. Where can I find the CSEP registration?

Staff and the program administrator are currently developing an online registration portal that will be similar to that used for the Administratively Determined Incentive (ADI) Program, which will be available soon and linked from the Clean Energy Program website. There will not be an application form you have to complete like that in the Pilot Program.

3. When is the next capacity allocation?

Registrations for the second Energy Year 2024 and 2025 capacity blocks may be submitted beginning May 15, 2024. Staff anticipates the Board will open a new capacity block for CSEP registrations for 250 MW of community solar for energy year 2025 at some point after 500 MW of projects have been approved. (updated May 2024)

4. What is the bill credit discount?

The bill credit discount is the percentage of the bill credit that is retained by the subscriber. The guaranteed bill credit discount is a minimum percentage that must apply to all subscribers of a project.

5. What if my project offers a greater discount for LMI subscribers?

The minimum discount offered to subscribers will be used in the case of a tiebreaker. LMI subscribers may still be offered higher discounts.

6. What if projects' guaranteed bill credit discounts are tied?

Projects will be accepted to each MW block until the last registration received in the registration portal causes the total capacity of all registrations in that block to exceed the capacity allocation for said block. The guaranteed bill credit discount should be submitted to two decimal places, so the Board does not expect a second tiebreaker to be needed, but it will have discretion in this event. Your project's guaranteed bill credit discount will be submitted in a field in the registration portal.

7. Is there a fee to submit a registration?

At this time, there is no fee for submitting a registration or to participate in the CSEP.

8. What is the CSEP's escrow requirement?

Solar developers participating in the CSEP are required to post escrow with the Board in an amount of $40.00 per kilowatt (kW) of DC nameplate capacity of the solar facility. Evidence of escrow is due 60 business days the Board obtains an escrow agent and notifies conditionally accepted projects how to post escrow. (updated May 2024)

9. Who can submit an Application form?

There are no restrictions as to who can apply. For example, an Applicant may be a project developer, project owner, project operator, municipality, contractor, installer, site owner, etc. However, pursuant to N.J.A.C. 14:8-9.3, NJBPU staff will not accept applications for Electric Distribution Companies (EDCs) to develop, own, or operate community solar projects.

10. Can an existing solar project apply to participate in the CSEP?

No, only new facilities that have not commenced commercial operation may apply. Facilities seeking eligibility CSEP must submit a registration and receive a notice of conditional registration pursuant to N.J.A.C. 14:8-11.5(g) prior to beginning construction on the facility unless the Board grants a waiver in response to a petition. Projects that were approved in the Community Solar Pilot Program have already been granted a waiver to transition to the CSEP.

11. What happens if I submit an incomplete registration?

A registration with a major deficiency will be rejected and a denial letter will be issued. A registration with a minor deficiency will be given 7 days to address the deficiency. Projects submitted during the initial registration period will still be considered for a tiebreaker after correction of a minor deficiency.

12. Are there penalties for withdrawing a project from the CSEP after it has been accepted to the program? Are penalties applied if the withdrawal is for cause?

The escrow amount of $40.00 per kW shall be forfeited to the State if the facility does not reach permission to operate (PTO) before the conditional registration expires. Withdrawn projects may also not submit a new registration until after the original expiration date has passed. (updated May 2024)

13. Can a project interconnected to a municipal utility (e.g., Madison, NJ) apply to participate in the CSEP?

No. The CSEP is only open to projects interconnected with one of the four electric distribution companies (PSE&G, JCP&L, Atlantic City Electric, or Rockland Electric). Municipal utilities may develop their own community solar programs, at their discretion.

14. Can parties to an application (e.g., project owner or property owner) be changed after a project receives an award from the Board?

Yes, parties to a registration can be changed, subject to notification to the Board. The notification requirements are described in the Community Solar Energy Program rules at N.J.A.C. 14:8-9.11.

15. What if a tiebreaker is not needed?

Projects must provide the guaranteed bill credit discount to subscribers, regardless of if it is used to determine project acceptance.

16. How do I complete the Milestone Reporting Form?

A Milestone Reporting Form must be included in the CSEP registration packet. Upon starting an application in the registration portal, you will receive a CSEP Registration Number that should be included on the form. For any milestones that have not yet been achieved, please include an estimated date for when this is expected to be achieves. This form is required for projects 1 MW (dc) or larger and optional for projects less than 1 MW. 

17. For projects that are cancelled before escrow is posted, will they still be contractually obligated to post and forfeit escrow? (added Nov. 21, 2023)

Registrations in the CSI program are not contracts with the state and therefore incur no contractual obligation. However, failure to post escrow will result in cancellation of awarded capacity. The Board reserves the right to take further action, including restricting later registration of the site in the SuSI Program.

18. Will all applications submitted within the first 10 day window beginning on 11/15 be reviewed as though they were submitted at the same time, or will those be treated on a first-come, first-served basis? (added Nov. 21, 2023)

All registration submitted during the initial registration period will be treated as if they were filed at the same time. There will be no first-come-first-served treatment during the opening ten-day window.

Siting and Permitting

1. Where can a project be located?

Community solar facilities must be sited on rooftops, carports and canopies over impervious surfaces, contaminated sites and landfills, or bodies of water that have little to no established floral and faunal resources (i.e., floating solar), such as water treatment reservoirs and dredge ponds. (updated May 2024)

2. Can a community solar project be on agricultural land or greenfield?


3. Are ground-mounted arrays excluded from the CSEP?

Because there is expected to be sufficient projects on the permitted site types, ground-mounted projects, other than those on contaminated sites or landfills verified by NJDEP, are excluded from the CSEP. These projects are recommended to enter the CSI Program if net metering is not possible at the site.

4. Does the registration require a meeting with the NJDEP Office of Permitting and Project Navigation (OPPN)?

An NJDEP Permit Readiness Checklist is required to be submitted with the registration for ground-mounted projects, and this form should also be submitted to OPPN, but applicants are not required to meet with OPPN prior to submitting a registration to the Board.

Further information regarding the NJDEP is available here. The Permit Readiness Checklist is available here.

5. If a contaminated site or landfill project was either fully permitted, or at a minimum, all permits had been applied for, does it still need to submit a completed OPPN Permit Readiness Checklist?

Yes, an NJDEP Permit Readiness Checklist is still required.

6. Is the 5 MW size limit for a community solar project in DC or AC Rating?

All of the Board's measurements are in DC rating.

7. Can a developer propose multiple 5 MW community solar projects on the same property or on contiguous properties?

No, co-location of community solar projects in excess of 5 MW is not permitted in the ADI Program and CSEP. Larger projects should consider applying for the CSI Program. However, a community solar project may be co-located with a net-metered project at the same or contiguous property. Rooftop projects on separate buildings on different properties are also permitted. Projects are also permitted to be at the same site as existing solar projects that are in the TI or SREC Programs. (updated May 2024)

8. Is there a minimum size for a community solar project?

There is no minimum size for a community solar project, though a project must have a minimum of 10 subscribers unless sited on the property of a multi-family building.

9. Where can a project's subscribers come from?

New projects in the CSEP may have subsribers from anywhere in the same EDC territory; there are no restrictions on geographic distance.

10. What permits must be applied for before submitting an application?

Projects must provide a list of all permits they have applied for or will apply for on the Community Solar Permit Form. An application must have already been submitted for all discretionary, or non-ministerial, permits, approvals, and entitlements. A non-ministerial permit is one in which one or more officials consider various factors and exercise some discretion in deciding whether to issue or deny a permit. This is in contrast to a ministerial permit, for which approval is contingent upon the project meeting pre-determined and established standards. Examples of non-ministerial permits include local planning board authorization, municipal zoning variances, and Pinelands Commission or Highlands Council approvals. While rooftop projects are typically granted such permits or variances, applications must have been submitted if required by a municipality. Examples of ministerial permits include building permits and electrical permits.

11. How long will it take for registrations to be reviewed and to hear back about if my project is accepted?

After the close of the initial registration period (May 29, 2024, at 11:59 p.m.), projects will be reviewed for completeness in the order or submission, or, if capacity for a MW block was exceeded, in the order of highest guaranteed bill credit discount until the capacity is met. Projects will have the opportunity to correct any minor deficiencies within 7 days of review. Staff expects the review process to be relatively quick paced.

12. What happens if my project is not selected for participation in the CSEP during this application period?

A project which was not selected to participate in the CSEP in this energy year may be resubmitted during the next energy year without advantage or disadvantage. There will not be a queue or waiting list.A project which was not selected to participate in the CSEP in this energy year may be resubmitted during the next energy year without advantage or disadvantage. There will not be a queue or waiting list.

13. Can I begin construction on my community solar project prior to receiving a notice of conditional registration in the CSEP?


14. Must a landfill be capped at the time of registration to be considered for a landfill project?

A landfill is not required to be capped at the time of the registration. A landfill is regulated by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, and a landfill must be properly closed before a solar facility may be built on the site. Please refer to the NJDEP’s Guidance for siting solar on landfills. Please note the expiration of conditional registration is two years after receiving notice of conditional registration, which will be provided after DEP verification of site eligibility as a landfill or contaminated site.

15. Are buildings considered co-located if they are on separate buildings with separate addresses? (updated May 9, 2024)

No. Projects on separate buildings on different properties are exempted from the co-location prohibition. Projects on the same property may sum to a total capacity of no more than 5 MW. (updated May 2024)


1. Are projects required to have submitted an interconnection agreement or have an executed interconnection agreement prior to applying to the CSEP?

Yes, all projects are required to have written authorization from the EDC providing conditional approval to construct. (updated May 2024)

2. What if I have not heard back from the utility about an interconnection agreement by the end of the initial registration period?

EDC authorization is required to apply for all projects. You may register the project if capacity is not yet reached or when the next capacity block opens after conditional approval is received. (updated May 2024)

3. What if my project will require additional interconnection upgrades after it's accepted to the CSEP? (updated May 2024)

It is the developer’s responsibility to apply for the CSEP when it believes its project is mature enough to be constructed within the duration of conditional registration in the CSEP. The developer must plan for the potential for additional interconnection requirements from the utility and should consider waiting to apply if it is not prepared for them. If upgrade costs are high, a project is still responsible for the payment of the required escrow.

4. Where can I find the capacity hosting maps for each EDC?

Capacity hosting maps are available for Atlantic City Electric, Rockland Electric Company, JCP&L, and PSEG.

5. Can a community solar project be turned on prior to being full subscribed?

Yes, a community solar project can be turned on prior to being fully subscribed. The Community Solar Energy Pilot Program rules do not require a project to be fully subscribed prior to beginning commercial operation.

6. Can a community solar project be connected to a 34.5 kV power line?

Projects may be connected to lines which the EDCs have jurisdiction over, which is not necessarily determined by voltage. (updated May 2024)

7. What was the decision process behind limiting on a DC vs AC basis? (added Nov. 21, 2023)

All of the Board's capacity measurements use DC ratings.

8. I haven’t gotten interconnection approval from the utility yet. Can I add my interconnection approval after submitting a registration? (added Nov. 21, 2023)

No, registrations cannot be modified after submission.

Community Engagement

1. How would you define "community-based organizations?

The term “community-based organizations” is not defined on the Community Engagement and Subscriber Acquisition Form; however, staff intends it to refer to non-profits or other organizations that provide a benefit or service to the local community and which can collaborate on providing input on the project and outreach to potential subscribers, particularly LMI households. We encourage you to provide all relevant information regarding any proposed partnerships.

2. What is the “community” for the purposes of the Community Engagement and Subscriber Acquisition Plan?

The community refers the municipality and immediate area in which the project will be located as well as to the broader EDC area from which households may subscribe. The narrative of the developer’s experience with community engagement should include outreach and partnerships with organizations that work with residents who may be able to become subscribers.

3. Can the letter(s) of support from the municipal council and/or mayor of the municipality in which the project will be located be a municipal resolution?

Yes, the letter or resolution should identify the municipality’s support for the project’s siting. The municipality can often be a key partner in creating awareness of and support for a community solar project and in promoting subscriptions. A letter of support is required to be attached to the Community Engagement and Subscriber Acquisition Plan.

4. If I check "No" on the form regarding partnership with a local community organization or publication of the form, will it impact a project's chances of being awarded allocation?


5. What should I do with the municipal letter of support? (added Nov. 21, 2023)

You will upload a copy of the required letter with the Community Engagement and Subscriber Acquisition Plan in the registration portal. The municipality should not send letters directly to the BPU.

Bill Credits

1. Where can I find more information about the community solar bill credits?

More information about the community solar bill credits, including updated bill credit calculations and sample bills provided by the Electric Distribution Companies, is available here.

2. If a subscriber is currently buying electricity from a third-party supplier, would they be eligible to participate in Community Solar? If so, would their credit value be based on the retail rate provided by their 3rd party supplier or by their local utility’s rate?

Third party supplier customers are eligible to participate in community solar. Pursuant to the Board Order issued July 10, 2019, and amended on August 7, 2019, the community solar bill credit is calculated based upon the applicable pre-Sales and Use Tax Basic Generation Service (“BGS”) charges at the time the energy output being credited to the subscriber was produced by the community solar facility.

3. When the SREC expires after 15 years, is there still an obligation to continue to offer the discount to subscribers? If yes, What would be penalties of non-compliance? (added Nov. 21, 2023)

Please refer to the CSEP Rule Proposal at sections 14:8-9.6(a) and 14:8-9.7(b). To participate in the CSEP, the project must offer at least the project’s minimum bill credit discount.


1. Where can I find a list of registered community solar subscriber organizations?

A list of registered community solar subscriber organizations is available here.

2. Who is eligible to be a community solar subscriber?

All ratepayers located in the service territory of a New Jersey Electric Distribution Company (EDC) are eligible to subscribe to a community solar project.

New projects approved in the CSEP may have subscribers located anywhere in the same EDC territory. Projects in the Pilot Program must maintain the area indicated in their approved application.

3. What are the LMI standards my project must meet?

All community solar projects shall be LMI projects, meaning at least 51% of capacity is subscribed by or reserved for qualified LMI subscribers. A project is not required to be fully subscribed at all times, but a project may not accept a subscriber which would cause greater than 49% of its capacity to be non-LMI.

4. Can subscribers be qualified as LMI by self-attestation?

Yes, the Board-approved self-attestation form is posted at (updated May 2024)

5. Can I begin verifying subscribers using the new methods added for permanent program?

Yes, Medicaid; Supplemental Security Income: Social Security Disability Insurance; Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children; Temporary Assistance for Needy Families; and the Low-Income Household Water Assistance Program may now be used in addition to the originally authorized list of programs.


1. How can I stay informed about the CSEP?

The best way to stay informed is to sign up for our listserv.

2. How many years must a community solar project operate before it can decommission or repurpose? (added Nov. 21, 2023)

SuSI and CSEP rules do not mandate a minimum project lifespan.

3. What should I do if I have problems with the registration portal? (added Nov. 21, 2023)

Please email with questions regarding submitting your registration.

4. Who should I contact if I have a question?

If your question has not been answered on this FAQ page, please email Staff may post additional questions and answers to this page.

Solar Activity Reports

Find a Solar Trade Ally

Solar Energy

Join Our Listserv

Follow Us:

Become a Facebook Fan!Follow us on Twitter!Follow us on Twitter!

New Jersey State Seal