Legislators meet to discuss Virginia energy policy

By Ben Delman on June 10, 2016

The Virginia legislature is holding a special joint committee this summer to discuss several pieces energy-related legislation the body was unable to resolve during its regular legislative session. The special committee met for an hour and a half on Wednesday to begin the process of reviewing this carried-over energy legislation. The bulk of the hearing was a presentation by a Frank Munyan, a representative from the Division of Legislative Services. This is the state agency responsible for providing research to the General Assembly.

Mr. Munyan’s presentation explained the various piece of legislation up for consideration in detail. He reviewed the past decade of Virginia energy policy and presented arguments for and against the bills committee members are to consider. Diving into specifics, Mr. Munyan discussed net metering and third party power purchase agreements. Pending legislation could change rules for both of these topics.

The meeting concluded with an update from Mark Rubin. Mr. Rubin is serving as a mediator for a group of stakeholders including utilities and the solar industry who are meeting to make progress on some of the more contentious aspects of solar power policy. Mr. Rubin explained that the parties are still early in their process. To this point, the stakeholders have merely been sharing their perspectives, but will soon delve into cost considerations. He said their intention is to develop a model that encourages solar production.

The committee’s next meeting date has yet to be announced. Sign up for our newsletter and listserv to stay informed.

Editor’s note: Special thanks to Hannah Weigard and Susan Stillman for their help compiling this summary.