KCC rejects Evergy’s proposals on rates for solar users

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FILE – In this Nov. 3, 2015 file photo, wind turbines dot the landscape near Steele City, Neb. Wind turbines and solar panels accounted for more than two-thirds of all new electric generation capacity added to the nation’s grid in 2015, according to a recent analysis by the U.S. Department of Energy. The remaining third […]

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Corporation Commission on Thursday rejected two proposals from Evergy concerning rates paid to accommodate solar users.

Instead, “it would be better policy to wait until Evergy’s next general rate case to address the subsidization issue more holistically,” said Brian Fedotin, general counsel for commission.

For now, residential solar users will be charged the same rates as standard residential customers, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported.

One of Evergy’s proposals would have charged people with solar panels a monthly grid access fee of $3 per kilowatt, even if they don’t take electricity from the grid.

The second proposal would have charged all Evergy customers a minimum of $35 per month.

Evergy contends it needs to recover the costs of providing on-demand electricity for solar-equipped homes that don’t use much electricity.

Solar advocates argued the first proposal would have discriminated against solar users and discouraged the use of solar, while the second plan would have disproportionately hurt low-income or low-usage customers.

The Kansas Supreme Court ruled last April that a plan to have solar or wind energy users pay an additional special demand charge was discriminatory.

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