Resource Page on House Bill 227 (Anti-Net Metering Legislation)
- Watch for new action alerts to show your opposition to HB 227 and support for Kentucky’s local solar industry. See KCC’s Alert Page
- Call the Legislative Message Line at 1-800-372-7181 and leave a message for the full Senate and members of the Senate Natural Resources & Energy Committee that you oppose HB227.
- Go to the Capitol to lobby legislators in-person. Lobbyists for the Kentucky Conservation Committee, a nonprofit legislative support organization, will be at the Capitol to assist citizens who wish to meet with their legislators on this bill. Please contact KCC at 502-209-9659 or email KCC if you wish to meet legislators in person on this bill.
- Plan on coming to the Senate Natural Resources & Energy Committee Meeting on Wednesday, March 21 at 11AM at the Capitol Annex.
Please call the Legislative Message Line at 1-800-372-7181 to leave a message for all Senators and urge them to oppose HB 227. Tell them this bill was not a compromise and will undermine Kentucky’s solar businesses.
HB 227 directs the PSC to allow utilities to recover all costs of service from net metering customers and would enable utilities to do that through their rate cases. This means potentially 23 rate cases recurring at regular intervals, an enormous burden for solar advocates to cope with. We have advocated for one administrative case before the PSC to resolve the issue in an equitable manner, based on the evidence, including consideration of the costs and benefits provided by solar. HB227-HCS2 does not do this.
Read the final bill (HB 227- HCS2) here: http://www.lrc.ky.gov/
CRITICAL PROBLEMS WITH HB 227/HCS2 – the Anti-Solar Net Metering Bill
HB 227/HCS2 was NOT a compromise negotiated in good faith with the solar industry. It DOES NOT address our fundamental concerns and would radically undermine Kentucky’s young solar industry.
- UNFAIRNESS – HB 227 is UNFAIR to solar businesses and Kentuckians who support using solar energy. It is a one-sided bill that favors only utilities – allowing them to recover costs without considering the benefits of solar to the utility or ratepayers.
- REGULATORY BURDENS – HB 227 would burden the solar industry and PSC with 23 recurring rate cases and will result in hundreds of thousands of dollars in recurring PSC litigation costs.
- ENSURING UNCERTAINTY FOR CUSTOMER INVESTMENTS – This bill allows frequent, recurring rate cases that could change the terms of net metering for existing and future customers and offers no language to protect customer investments. If customers don’t know how their net metering rate might change in the future, it becomes impossible to predict the value of an investment. This would ruin the market for rooftop solar.
- CLAMPING DOWN ON MARKETS – The last-minute changes to HB 227 made it even worse by imposing a hard cap of 1% on the solar market for every utility. This restriction is the exact opposite of the solar industry’s goal (and the desire of many Kentuckians), which is to expand the solar market.
- TILTING THE PLAYING FIELD FURTHER IN FAVOR OF UTILITIES – The solar industry seeks a level playing field to compete with utilities via increasing system sizes, and access to leases, PPA’s, and other tools. This bill does not address any of these concerns. It only serves the utilities’ interests.
- RADICALLY DE-VALUING SOLAR – HB 227 radically changes how net metering operates. Rather than crediting customers for their net energy generation on a monthly basis, HB 227 would enable utilities to use “instantaneous” netting, de-valuing all solar energy supplied to the grid. This further de-values a customer’s solar investment.
- RISKS TO EXISTING NET METERING CUSTOMERS – HCS 4 does not clearly grandfather existing customers, who installed their solar arrays assuming they would receive a retail one-to-one credit for all electricity fed into the grid.
- A FALSE PRETENSE OF COMPROMISE – HCS2 created the false pretense of meeting the solar industry’s concerns by directing this issue to the PSC, but it failed to create a fair and reasonable process to resolve the issue. Establishing an unclear, unfair, costly, and burdensome process that favors only the utilities, while immediately disrupting the solar market and restricting its long-term growth is not the result of compromise.
WE SUPPORT ONE Administrative Case before the PSC to resolve the issue of how to value customer-owned solar energy, considering costs and benefits, resulting in a fair and equitable solution for all parties. All utilities would be party to this one case, which should be resolved before any changes are made to net metering.
Published Articles on HB227 Supporting Homegrown Solar:
- “Solar Customers Still Get Shaft in Latest Version of Solar Bill Pushed by Utilities,” Herald-Leader, March 14, 2018
- Op Ed: “Don’t Fall for Same Old Culture War. Rural Kentuckians Support Solar,” Lexington Herald-Leader, March 2, 2018.
- “Utilities Spending Big to Snuff Rooftop Solar. Will Consumers Get Stuck with the Tab?” Featuring KCC E.D. Lane Boldman. Lexington Herald-Leader, Feb. 28, 2018.
- “Solar Shuffle: Bill to curb rooftop panels suffers setback in Kentucky House of Representatives,” Louisville Courier-Journal, Feb. 28, 2018
- Letter to the Editor: “HB227 — A Flawed Bill: A Solar Owner’s View,” The Kentucky Standard, Bardstown and Nelson County, Feb. 27, 2018
- Opinion: “Other Customers Aren’t Paying for Net Metering,” Frankfort State-Journal, Feb. 20, 2018
- “House Bill 227 Would Effectively End Net Metering in Kentucky,” Kentucky Today, Feb. 19, 2018
- “Why This Kentucky Entrepreneur Is Looking Beyond Coal to Renewable Energy,” Forbes Magazine, Feb. 19, 2018
- Op-Ed: “Solar Customers Add Power to Utilities, Don’t Hurt Low-Income Customers,” Herald-Leader Feb. 18, 2018
- Opinion: “House Solar Bill Undermines Entrepreneurship, Benefits Monopolies,” Matt Partymiller, Herald-Leader, Feb. 18, 2018
- “Solar Energy Bill Would Change Net Metering,” Glasgow Daily Times, Feb. 16, 2018
- Opinion: “Natural Gas Lobby Attacking Residential Solar in Kentucky,” The Lane Report, Feb. 15, 2018
- “Kentucky Lawmaker Borrows an Analogy from Koch-Funded Group to Gain Support for Anti-Solar Bill,” ThinkProgress, Feb. 15, 2018
- Editorial: “Who Wants to Kill Solar Energy in Kentucky?” Grayson Journal-Times, Feb. 14, 2018
- “Using Tomatoes to Attack Solar Power, a Kentucky Lawmaker Pulls from Big Business Playbook,” Courier-Journal, Feb. 14, 2018
- “Mayor Fischer Won’t Say Whether He is For or Against LG&E-Backed Bill to Kill Rooftop Solar,” Louisville Courier-Journal, Feb. 14, 2018
- “Ky Legislature Looks at Cutting Net Metering for Solar,“ The Daily Independent, Ashland, Feb. 9, 2018
- “Against Energy Subsidies? Lawmakers complaining about solar should dig into this” Herald-Leader, Feb. 9, 2018
- “Advocates Say Forecast Bleak for Ky. Solar Industry Under Proposed Bill,” Danville Advocate-Messenger, Featuring Wilderness Trace Solar, Feb. 9, 2018
- “Is the Sun Setting on Solar Energy in Kentucky?” Lexington Herald-Leader, Feb. 8, 2018
- “Two Big Deceptions Aimed at the Solar Market in Kentucky,” Lexington Herald-Leader, Feb. 8, 2018
- “Controversial Net Metering Bill in Kentucky Voted Out of Committee,” PV Magazine, Feb. 8, 2018
- Commentary: “Kentucky’s Emerging Solar Industry Threatened by Bill,” Insider Louisville, Feb. 7, 2018
- “Rep. Wayne Slams ‘Insidious Malignancy’ in Effort to Pass Kentucky Anti-Solar Bill,” Courier-Journal, Feb. 7, 2918
- “Solar Could Cloud Over,” Middlesboro from KCC Past President Andy McDonald, Middlesboro Daily News, Feb. 6, 2018
- “Sekisui Plans to Install Solar Panels at Winchester Site,” Winchester Sun, Feb. 6, 2018
- “Who is Strangling Solar Panels in the State of Kentucky?” Cleantechnica, Feb. 5, 2018
- “Will GOP Leaders Let Utilities Crush Solar?” Lexington Herald-Leader, Feb. 5, 2018
- “Clean Energy Backers: Solar’s Viability in KY in Peril,” featuring Eastern Ky Solar businesses, Public News Service, Feb. 5, 2018
- “Kentucky’s Emerging Solar Industry Threatened by a Bill to End Net Metering,” Insider Louisville, Feb. 5, 2018
- “House Should Reject Gooch’s Dirty Trick to Subvert Rooftop Solar,” Lexington Herald-Leader, Feb. 2, 2018
- “Solar Bill Committee Gets Three New Members, Raising Charges of Vote Packing,” Courier-Journal, Feb. 2, 2018
- “Solar in Kentucky is Threatened. See who is behind it” Courier-Journal, Feb. 1, 2018
- “Kentucky’s Fledgling Solar Industry Smacked by One-Two Punch,” with quotes from KCC President Sarah Lynn Cunningham, Courier-Journal, Jan. 24, 2018
- “Does House Bill 227 Throw Shade at Solar? Advocates Say Yes,” WUKY, Feb. 2, 2018
- “Kentucky’s Lawmakers Consider Bill that would Scale Back Solar Incentives” WKU, Feb. 1, 2018
- “Kentucky Bill Would Throttle Back Net Metering,” PV Magazine, Jan. 25, 2018
- “Kentucky Legislature Tries to Shut Down the Sun,” Daily Yonder, Jan. 24, 2018
Fact Sheets and public-resource handouts on HB227:
- Ky. Sustainable Energy Alliance Summary of House Bill 227
- Affordable Housing and Net Metering (courtesy of Earth Tools)
- “Are Other Ratepayers Paying for Net Metering” (courtesy of Ky. Resources Council and Ky Conservation Committee)
- Solar Jobs in Kentucky (courtesy of the Ky. Conservation Committee)
- Kentucky Solar Jobs Census (courtesy of the Solar Foundation)
- Background on the Solar Jobs Census (qualifying information on the stats)
- Potential Rate Impacts of Net Metering for KU/LG&E (courtesy of Andy McDonald)
- HB227 A Sledgehammer Crushing a Seedling