SEIA Applauds Approval Of Texas Utility’s Rate Case Settlement

On Wednesday, the Public Utility Commission of Texas unanimously approved a settlement agreement to resolve Dallas-based Oncor Electric Delivery Co.’s 2017 rate case, which according to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), originally included some anti-solar proposals.

Sean Gallagher, vice president of state affairs for SEIA, welcomed the settlement in a statement Wednesday.

“SEIA supports the Texas Commission’s approval today of the settlement in Oncor’s rate case. We’re pleased that Oncor agreed to withdraw its original proposal to institute a solar rate specially designed to impose a minimum bill on residential customers who have or will install solar,” said Gallagher.

He explained, “The original proposal would have instituted a permanent minimum bill for residential customers based on their electricity usage prior to installing a solar system. No amount of solar generation or energy efficiency could have reduced that charge.

“We support the unanimous settlement approved today, as it will allow current and future solar customers the freedom to choose their energy source without fear of financial penalty,” Gallagher continued. “Regardless of how they are labeled, minimum bills based on historic usage without prior warning are unfair to any customer and have no relation to cost-based rates.

“Texas has some of the strongest solar resources in the nation and is home to nearly 9,400 employees in the U.S. solar industry. We look forward to working with Oncor to ensure solar growth can continue, cementing the state’s role as one of the top and fastest-growing solar states in the country,” he concluded.

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