Voters may have to decide between 2 solar energy amendments

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida voters may have to choose between two rival proposals dealing with solar energy.

Consumers for Smart Solar announced Wednesday that it's launching a petition drive to place an amendment dealing with solar energy on the 2016 ballot. It will need to collect nearly 700,000 signatures.

This amendment is aimed at trying to stop another proposal dealing with solar power.

Floridians for Solar Choice has collected nearly 100,000 signatures for its proposal to prevent the state from regulating small, private solar companies that provide up to two megawatts of solar energy to properties that border them.

Backers say electric utilities have used their political clout to block proposals that would allow solar energy to grow.

Those aligned with Consumers for Smart Solar contend this amendment would shield solar energy providers from consumer protection regulations.