Kentucky - Support HB 227

March 26, 2018

Dear Senator,

On behalf of the 17,138 members and supporters of the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CCAGW) in Kentucky, I ask you to support HB 227.  This legislation will protect Kentucky ratepayers and taxpayers while ensuring affordable, abundant energy for all.

Sound energy policy demands that all sources of energy be treated fairly and that government not pick winners and losers.  Since April 2004, however, Bluegrass State ratepayers have been footing the bill for a massive subsidy to rooftop solar customers.  Private solar customers receive credit for energy they generate at the retail rate, which includes not only the cost of the energy they produce, but also a portion of the fixed costs that make the energy grid safe, reliable, and able to accommodate add-ons like private solar installations.  Ultimately, the solar subsidy provides credits at 300 percent of the value of energy in Kentucky.  When solar customers are not paying their share of the fixed costs, the grid’s reliability is undermined.  Only about 1,000 families—who have the means to install solar panels on their roofs at their own expense—benefit from this subsidy at the expense of poor and middle-class energy customers.

The current net metering law allows solar customers to game the system while driving up energy bills for everyone else.  HB 227 will bring fairness to all ratepayers by allowing the Public Service Commission to ensure that future solar customers more fairly share in the costs necessary to maintain the energy grid.  The solar industry is booming nationally and in Kentucky, providing excellent returns to investors.  It is able to stand on its own without this unsustainable subsidy.

This legislation grandfathers all current private solar customers under the existing net metering policy.  It simply ensures that future solar customers share more equitably in the costs necessary to maintain the energy grid that they and everyone else use.  HB 227 will ensure a healthy and stable grid, fairness for ratepayers and taxpayers, and the energy diversity that Kentucky’s economy deserves.

I urge you to support HB 227.

Sincerely,

Thomas A. Schatz

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