Big solar fight breaks out

Posted on Jan 7, 2016

It’s a closely watched fight with broad implications for the solar industry and the push by the Administration to go green. An Arizona utility that generates and distributes electric power in one of the country’s sun-drenched areas has asked the state’s Corporation Commission for assistance in its fight with homeowners who have installed their own solar power panels, typically on house rooftops. Tucson Electric Power Co. asked the agency, which sets utility rates, to let it double its basic monthly service charge for residential customers, from $10 to $20 per month, as well as assess new fees, penalties, and charges on rooftop solar customers. A study done by the utility says that customers with solar panels, on average, shift $67 a month in costs to non-solar customers because they pay less for grid upkeep.

The fight has the potential to go to the courts and set standards...

New solar policy

Posted on Jan 7, 2016

New Policy Lets You Save $100’s On Your Energy Bill Every Year If you currently own a house and live in specific zip codes the government is giving $1000’s to each consumer to install solar panels and consumers are reducing their energy bill by as much as 70%. New subsidies and rebates help to cover huge costs associated with installation so there is significant savings for the homeowners thanks in part to companies like NationalSolarProgram.com. With as little as $0 down, you could be on your way to significantly reducing your electric bill in a matter of weeks.

So here’s the deal. You no longer have to buy solar panels, the new policy let’s you lease solar panels for as little as $0 down. Until now, solar panels cost $10’s of thousands of dollars to purchase and install and unless you were building a new home or had that much extra cash sitting around, so the cost was more...

Tax credit for solar installation

Posted on Jan 6, 2016

Several years ago, the New Mexico Legislature passed a new tax credit to incentivize homeowners and businesses to install solar energy systems. And it was incredibly successful. The state Energy Conservation Division estimates that more than $31 million was spent by New Mexico businesses and homeowners on solar panels and heating systems in just the past year. But, the tax credit is set to expire this year unless the Legislature takes action to renew it. Rep. Sarah Maestas Barnes, R-Albuquerque, and Sen. Mimi Stewart, D-Albuquerque, have both introduced legislation to restore the tax credits. Both bills would maintain the current benefit of as much as 10 percent of the total cost, up to $9,000, in the upcoming years, with that amount being reduced incrementally starting in the year 2019.

We have argued before, and continue to believe, that New Mexico’s tax code has far too...