ACC Ruling On Fee For APS Solar Customers
Arizona Corporation Commission makes a political decision without adequate information.
The Arizona Corporation Commission held hearings Nov 13 and 14 on the Arizona Public Service Company’s (APS) proposal to add significant fees for households with solar panels. See my Solar Energy and Net Metering blog posted Nov 6th for my perspective and additional details on the heated debate that was being waged about household solar energy and “net metering”. On Nov 14 the ACC decided by a 3 – 2 vote to institute a minor new fee on residential solar customers who install their systems after January 1, 2014 (70 cents/kw capacity, or $4 to $7 per month for typical size systems).
The ACC also specified that this fee can be adjusted on these customers in the future. The two dissenting commissioners argued for a higher fee. Fortunately, installing home solar systems will remain a good investment for now, but the ability to adjust the fee for customers after they have installed their system creates an uncertainty that could hinder investments.
Solar energy and net metering will be revisited in 2015 when AZ Public Service is due for a full hearing on their rates. Let’s make sure we have a Commission that will insist this future decision be based on the facts and on a sound and objective economic analysis.
Check the links below for coverage of the ACC decision in the Phoenix and Tucson newspapers.
AZ Republic – Nov 14, 2013
Commission votes to raise APS solar customers’ bills
AZ Daily Star – Nov 15, 2013
Regulators approve fee on APS solar customers