[r49] IURC Seeking Public Comment on Existing Net Metering Rules (6/11/2010)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Start Date: 6/11/2010 All Day
End Date: 6/11/2010
Dear Friends,

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) wants input from consumers and other interested stakeholders on the Commission's existing net metering rules at an upcoming meeting in South Bend on June 21.

According to a press release from the IURC, with the increased emphasis on alternative energy, the Commission has experienced a rise in the number of inquiries it has received about net metering. The agency has also listened to concerns examined by legislative proposals and raised by the public about the current rules, which were established in March 2005. The Commission finds it appropriate to further engage these interested parties to better understand the needs of Hoosiers.

Therefore, the Commission will begin collecting comments and information from the public beginning in June so that it can gauge the effectiveness of the existing rules and determine whether the state could benefit by altering the rules (see event details below).

Indiana's existing net metering rules spell out the minimum requirements for customers and utilities alike. Currently, the rules only apply to investor-owned utility (IOU) companies, such as Northern Indiana Public Service Company, Southern Indiana Gas and Electric, Indianapolis Power & Light, Duke Energy Indiana, and Indiana Michigan Power.

Net metering is a service offering that allows participants to supplement their electric usage and mitigate a portion of their cost by installing renewable energy facilities, such as wind turbines or solar panels. If the amount the customer receives from the utility is greater than the amount delivered to the utility, the difference is charged to the customer. If the amount the customer received from the utility is less than the amount delivered to the utility, the customer receives a credit on the next bill for the difference.

As defined in Indiana law, an eligible net metering customer means a customer in good standing who owns and operates a solar, wind, or hydroelectric generating facility with a capacity of less than or equal to 10kW on their premises. At a minimum, the five IOUs must offer net metering to residential customers and K-12 schools that install a net metering facility. They may also offer net metering to commercial or industrial customers as well.

Event details:

Monday, June 21, 2010 - South Bend

Net Metering Public Meeting at 6:00 p.m.

County-City Building

227 West Jefferson Boulevard

Suite 400 S

South Bend, IN 46601

For more information on these hearings, please feel free to contact my office directly at 317-234-3825 or toll-free at 1-800-382-9841.

Sincerely,

State Rep. Wes Culver