WV Senate Passes SB 1 with net metering protection

By Emily Stiever on January 22, 2015
This was originally posted on Bill Howley’s blog The Power Line. Check it out! 

JANUARY 21, 2015

Just a little while ago, the WV Senate passed Senate Bill 1, repealing all of the current Alternative and Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard law, except for the authorization of net metering in WV.  The Senate Bill 1 renames the law, §24-2F Net Metering of Customer Generators.

Two amendments were added to the bill.  An amendment was added in the Senate Energy, Industry and Mining committee to allow customer generators to donate excess net metering credits to charities that provide assistance for low income electric customers.  The other amendment was added on the floor today that requires the PSC to ensure that no costs of net metering are passed on to other rate payers.  Of course, this has never been a problem in WV, and the intent of this amendment has long been covered by §24-3-2 which prevents power companies from giving any special treatment to any group of rate payers.  Net metering has operated for 7 years in WV under this existing statute without any problems.

Earlier in the week, Senate President Cole made it clear that SB 1 will be on the fast track after it crosses over to the House.  The Charleston Gazette reporter Phil Kabler reported earlier in the week:

Cole expects the legislation to be passed and sent to the governor by the end of the week.
That is what the fast track looks like at the WV Legislature.  We will finally be rid of the fake ARPS law that holds back renewable power development AND, thanks to active and effective citizens, we will still have net metering protected in law.