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Last year legislation to ensure solar customers paid the costs associated with providing them electricity was considered. The stakeholders struggled to find common ground and the legislation failed to move forward. Over the interim, the stakeholders continued to talk and all interested parties reached an agreement acceptable to all involved.

The agreement gives the solar industry, solar users, utility companies, and other stakeholders certainty and predictability for the future. Current users are grandfathered into their current status and rate. Once there is a five percent market penetration of solar, or after seven years, the IUB is authorized to conduct a value of solar study. The parameters for the study are established and rates cannot be adjusted more than five percent based on study results.

This agreement resulted in bipartisan support for what had been a contentious issue. SF 583, with the agreed-upon language, received both unanimous support in the Commerce Committee and unanimous support from the whole House with a vote of 98-0.

Author: David Kerr