Legislative Update: Hearing Scheduled On Net Metering Bill

9 months ago | Jan 30, 2018
By: CEP Staff,
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Hearing Scheduled Next Week On Net Metering Bill

A bill that would revert Kansas net metering laws to 2009 standards will get a hearing next week in the Senate Utilities Committee. Senate Bill 322 would nullify changes made in 2014 to the Net Metering and Easy Connection Act, which applies only to investor-owned utilities.

Net metering is a billing mechanism that credits solar energy (or other distributed energy) system owners for the electricity they add to the grid.

For example, if a residential or business customer has a photovoltaic (PV) rooftop system, it may generate more electricity than the home or business uses during daylight hours. If it is net-metered, the electricity meter will run backward to provide a credit against what electricity is consumed at night or other periods when the home or business electricity use exceeds the system’s output. Customers are only billed for their "net” energy use.

The committee hearing on SB 322 is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Feb. 6 in Room 548 South of the Kansas Statehouse.

Changes in SB 322 include:

  • Customers who use more energy than they generate during a billing period will be billed for their net electricity use just like customers in the same rate class.

  • Customers who generate more electricity than they use will have their excess electricity carried over from month to month and credited at a ratio of one to one against the customer’s energy consumption. Any net excess generation credits will expire at the end of the calendar year.

  • Residential customers may net meter up to 25 kilowatts (kW).

  • Commercial, industrial, school, local government, state government, federal government, agricultural, and institutional customers may net meter up to 200 kW.

  • Net metering is capped until it equals or exceeds 1% of each utility’s prior year’s peak demand.

  • Net metered customers may not be charged additional fees or a different rate for generating their own energy.

Updates From The Clean Energy Business Council

In addition to the net metering bill, the Clean Energy Business Council expects discussion of revisions to the Kansas Energy Efficiency Investment Act (KEEIA), which was passed in 2014. KEEIA allows the Kansas Corporation Commission to permit electric and gas utility companies to benefit from efficiency measures. Last year the KCC rejected an efficiency proposal from Kansas City Power & Light, prompting the discussion of potential changes during this legislative session.

Updates From The Kansas Rural Center

The Climate + Energy Project is a sponsor of the weekly Policy Watch, produced by the Kansas Rural Center. Issues highlighted this week include:

  • Noxious weeds: The Kansas Department of Agriculture has again requested introduction of legislation in both the House and Senate to fundamentally change noxious weed law in Kansas.

  • Water: The Governor’s 50-year Long-Term Vision for the Future of Water Supply in Kansas is presented in detail by the Kansas Water Authority and the Kansas Water Office but remains unfunded in the governor’s 2018 and 2019 budgets.

  • Corporate agriculture: This week the Kansas Department of Health and Environment requested legislation to change animal conversion units so that clusters of chicken houses with over 100,000 birds can be sited much closer to neighboring properties (4,000 feet down to 1,360 feet).

Read more in the latest Policy Watch from the Kansas Rural Center online.

Kansas WEALTH Policy, Civic Engagement, And You!

Watch live at 2 p.m. Tuesdays or later on the Climate + Energy Project’s Facebook page as guests from Kansas organizations discuss Water, Energy, Air, Land, Transportation, and Health (WEALTH) issues—and how you can share your thoughts with policymakers!

This week’s Facebook live event features Scott Anglemyer of the Kansas Association of Community Action Programs. Click here for a complete schedule and more information.

And mark your calendar for WEALTH Day on March 15 at the Kansas Statehouse when you can learn more about and advocate for WEALTH issues. RSVP now!