Idaho Power customers will be able to testify or phone-in testimony during a public hearing June 11 on Idaho Power Company’s application to modify its net metering tariff.
The public hearing begins at 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 11, in the commission hearing room at 472 W. Washington St. For those who cannot attend, the commissioners will also take testimony over the telephone. (Phone-in instructions are included below.) Customers who have submitted written comment do not need to testify again at a public hearing because their written comments are already included in the official record for the case. However, anyone wishing to testify may do so.
Idaho Power is proposing to double the capacity limit on the amount of energy that can be generated from its net metering customers from 2.9 MW to 5.8 MW. The utility also proposes to adjust the amount net metering customers are paid. That’s needed, Idaho Power claims, because of increasing costs to serve a growing number of net metering customers, costs the company says are being passed on to other ratepayers.
Net metering customers offset their electrical use by connecting their own generating resources (such as solar panels or wind turbines) to Idaho Power’s transmission grid.
The case has already generated hundreds of comments to the PUC, many claiming the changes proposed by Idaho Power will make it difficult, if not impossible, for net metering customers to recoup their investment in solar panels.
Parties to the case, including commission staff, have submitted their comments. They can be found at www.puc.idaho.gov. Click on the electric icon, then on “Open Electric Cases,” and scroll down to Case No. IPC-E-12-27. Idaho Power is scheduled to file its rebuttal comments on Friday.
Earlier on June 11, the commission will conduct a technical hearing, which begins at 9:30 a.m., also in the commission hearing room. At this hearing, formal parties to the case will be subject to cross examination from other parties. The hearing is open to the public, but public testimony is not taken. Parties to the case include commission staff, Idaho Power Company, the City of Boise, Idaho Clean Energy Association, Idaho Conservation League, Pioneer Power LLC, Powerworks LLC and Snake River Alliance.
Customers who are not able to attend the 7 p.m. public hearing can listen and/or testify by calling 1-800-920-7487 and entering the participant code 76373262.
All participants will be able to hear the proceeding. A participant’s phone is automatically muted except when testifying. Those who would like to testify, press *1 (star one) on the phone key pad at any time to be placed in a line of those wanting to testify. When it is your turn to testify, an electronic prompt will say, “Ask your question.” At that time, the person testifying will be asked to state his/her name and address, be sworn in and then offered the opportunity to testify. When the testimony is completed, the telephone is automatically muted allowing the caller to listen to the rest of the hearing. Those who have pressed *1 to testify and then decide not to testify, can push the pound key to be taken out of the line to testify.
Anyone having questions about testifying is encouraged to call the commission at 334-0339 or 1-800-432-0369.