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Sporadic signal outages in Redding area
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Redding Will Uphold Current Solar Customers Contracts

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Elliott Brown
/
Flickr Creative Commons

The 1200 existing solar customers in the City of Redding and anyone who installs solar before the end of the year will be able to access a 30 year net-metering deal with the city.

 

Solar customers reach what is known as net-metering when they have generated more electricity than they use and begin to send it back into the grid.

There’s been a lot of discussion over the last month over whether or not the city should continue to pay solar customers for that power, and at what rate. Anyone who purchased solar prior to September 3rdhad entered into a 30 year contract with the city of Redding to sell power back to the grid at a rate of 15 cents per kilowatt hour.

 

But when the state changed the law, the Redding Electric Utility proposed doing away with that subsidy, even for those already under contract. 

 

Last Monday night, the city council voted to maintain the current contracts, and offer them to anyone who purchases solar prior to the end of the year.

 

At that time the state will begin mandating any new home construction include solar, and the city is still trying to decide how to deal with those customers.

 

Council member Kristen Schreder suggested that the subsidy is not fair to the 43,000 non-solar customers and if it continues at some time in the future they would have to pay more.

 

“When we have that conservation about whether we trust in our city council to keep our rates as low as possible, I want to be remembered for saying that I think we are going in the wrong direction.” Schreder said.

 

Erin Reisner told Schreder that while she agrees it’s important to keep rates as low as possible she’s more interested in honoring the existing contracts.

 

“I think that it’s more important for us as government and for our citizens to believe our word.” Reisner said.

 

And there is still a citizen committee that the council appointed last month to look into the issue, with their recommendation expected by the end of the year –just in time for the new state solar laws to take effect.