Exit Fee Decision Delayed

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has postponed issuing a decision on the proposed exit fees in the state until at least April 3.

Sacramento, California – March 19, 2003 [SolarAccess.com] In January, Administrative Law Judge, Charles Pulsifer issued an order that would have imposed a two to five cent per kilowatt hour (kWh) departing load or exit fee on all distributed generation, including solar, wind and other fossil fuel technologies such as diesel generators. CPUC President Michael Peevey has prepared an alternative order that would, according to sources close to the negotiations in California, exempt solar energy and other “ultra-clean” generation from the fee. At least two other commissioners have presented alternative proposals, as well. The issue has been a catalyst for intense grass-roots pressure on the CPUC, with more than 7000 individuals contacting the commission against the fees. And, although, nothing has yet been officially decided, California activists involved with the process are cautiously optimistic that solar and other Renewable Energy has been spared. “Everyone is cautiously optimistic that we have convinced them to agree with our point of view on this,” said Les Nelson, executive director of the California Solar Energy Industries Association. “Several sources, based on direct information from the commissioner level, suggest that there are four votes favorable for the decision.” On April 3, those votes will be cast and counted. Peter Carvelli can be reached at peter.carvelli@solaraccess.com

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