EL CENTRO – The Imperial Irrigation Board of Directors voted to hold public rate hearings on the net energy metering (NEM) program Tuesday at their regular meeting.
California utilities were mandated to implement a net energy metering program by January 1, 2010. The program obligated California utilities to make NEM available to customer-generators (home solar installations) on a first-come-first-served basis. IID’s NEM obligation was 50.2 MW, a goal which was met in the first quarter of 2016.
IID staff has determined that a new NEM program be instituted. The new NEM proposal would limit cross-customer class subsidization that is a result of the current state-mandated NEM rat structure.
No rates will be finalized until after the public hearings. There will be subsequent meetings with stakeholders.
“We are moving at a steady clip on the applications that make up this back-log in the order in which they were received,” said IID general manager Kevin Kelley. “We ought to have them all knocked out in the next month or so.”
Some home solar systems have not been connected, not due to the termination of the program, but because of faulty workmanship.
IID customers are encouraged to install solar panels to offset their electrical costs, although they are no longer paid for any excess generation of electricity. It is recommended that a reputable company be contracted to install the solar systems.
The hearings will be held in El Centro on July 12 and in La Quinta on July 13 at 5 p.m.