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Panel rejects new fee for solar homes in Utah

Published on NewsOK Modified: August 30, 2014 at 5:03 pm •  Published: August 30, 2014

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Advocates of renewable energy are hailing the rejection of Rocky Mountain Power's request for a new fee for residential rooftop solar panels in Utah.

They're calling the Utah Public Service Commission's decision on Friday a victory for clean air and energy as well as consumer choice.

Rocky Mountain wanted to charge residential customers with solar panels a $4.65 monthly fee to cover its distribution costs of energy for times when solar is not putting power in the grid.

But the commission ruled the utility failed to prove the fee was justified.

"What a bright day for Utah's future," said Sarah Wright, executive director of Utah Clean Energy. "This order protects energy choice in Utah, and recognizes the potential solar has to benefit all Utahns."

The utility hopes the commission revisits the issue, Rocky Mountain spokesman Dave Eskelsen said. The company argues such residential customers are not paying their fair share of its fixed costs to maintain the power system.

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