2017 Indiana General Assembly: Energy and Utility Bill Watch List

Mon, 01/09/2017 - 12:19

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bad Bills

SB309: Distributed Generation

Authors: Sen. Brandt Hershman (R), Sen. James Merritt (R)

Sponsors: Rep. David Ober (R), Rep. Edmond Soliday (R)

Status: Heading to the Governor's desk

Votes & Actions:

Position: CAC opposes this bill

Description: SB309 places a permanent prohibition on net metering in 5 years and ends net metering permanently in 30 years. This bill is an attempt by Indiana’s electric monopoly utilities to quash the rooftop solar industry and prevent homeowners and small businesses from generating their own energy on their own property using the power of the sun, the wind, and other renewable energy resources. HB1188 is a similar bill that we are also watching.  

 

 

Good Bills

SB416: Infrastructure assistance fund

Authors: Sen. Ed Charbonneau (R), Sen. Douglas Eckerty (R), Sen. James Merritt (R), Sen. Eric Bassler (R)Sen. Susan Glick (R)Sen. Karen Tallian (D), Sen. David Niezgodski (D), Sen. Mark Stoops (D), Sen. Lonnie Randolph (D) 

Sponsors: Rep. David Ober (R), Rep. Greg Beumer (R), Rep. Steven Stemler (D), Rep. Karlee Macer (D)

Status: Heading to the Governor's desk

Votes & Actions:

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description: SB416 creates a fund to assist communities struggling with the current funding challenges they face in maintaining and upgrading their water and wastewater infrastructure. The fund will allow communities and local utilities to seek grants, loans, and other financial assistance in an attempt to mitigate rate increases on consumers and reduce the financial burden on water utilities and local governments.

 

HB1519: Infrastructure development zone utility service

Authors: Rep. Health VanNatter (R), Rep. David Ober (R), Rep. Matt Pierce (D)

Sponsors: Sen. Ed Charbonneau (R), Sen. Douglas Eckerty (R), Sen. Jon Ford (R), Sen. Eric Koch (R), Sen. David Niezgodski (D), Sen. Lonnie Randolph (D)

Status: In the House

Votes:

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description: HB1519 puts in place a process which allows water utilities to acquire future water resources for the purpose of serving their customers and authorizes water utilities to seek approval from the Commission to replace customer-owned lead service lines. Additionally, the bill authorizes water and wastewater utilities to create a low-income assistance program in an attempt to insulate vulnerable Hoosier households from the significant increases in water and sewer bills by making their monthly bills more affordable.

 

SB67: Annual customer reports by energy utilities

Author: Sen. Jean Breaux (D)

Status: Died in the Senate Utilities Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description: This bill would require public electric and gas utilities to annually report certain data concerning customer accounts and low income customer accounts, such as accounts in arrears or number of disconnected accounts. Many utility consumers, most notably low-income residential customers, face serious payment difficulties with their monthly bills and risk the loss of essential home energy service.  Regular reporting of collection and payment data is necessary to assess on an ongoing basis the state of home energy security among Indiana’s residential customers, and to evaluate the effectiveness of programs and policies intended to protect that security. Without this essential data, it is not possible to understand if home energy bills are affordable and how the State of Indiana can appropriately respond to the payment troubles increasingly being experienced within the low-income population.

 

SB500: Home owner associations and solar power

Authors: Sen. Aaron Freeman (R)Sen. Dennis Kruse (R)Sen. Vaneta Becker (R)Sen. Michael Delph (R)Sen. Greg Taylor (D)

Sponsor: Rep. Mike Speedy (R)

Status: Died in the House Judiciary Commmittee

Votes:

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description: Currently, many homeowner’s associations (HOA) severely restrict the use of solar panels on homes, or outright prohibit the installation of solar panels. The bill would prohibit an HOA from preventing a homeowner from installing solar panels or from placing onerous and unnecessary restrictions on the use of solar energy.

 

HB1015: School efficiency grants

Authors:  Rep. Randall Frye (R), Rep. Robert Behning (R), Rep. Terri Jo Austin (D), Rep. Terry Goodin (D)

Status: Died in the House Ways and Means Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description: This bill establishes the school efficiency grant program. The fund would assist school corporations with costs associated with implementing energy efficiency measures to reduce energy usage and reduce monthly energy bills. Energy efficiency is the least cost energy resource, creates jobs, and helps to clean up our air and water. Additionally, reducing the energy bills at our schools saves taxpayers money and allows more money to be spent on educating our children, rather than enriching the monopoly utilities. 

 

HB1529: Demand Side Management Programs

Author: Rep. Ryan Dvorak (D)

Status: Died in the House Utilities, Energy and Telecommunications Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description: HB1529 sets into place a framework to restore the state’s energy efficiency program with requirement that all customers participate to better benefit the public.

 

HB1624: Solar power for government electric customers

Authors: Rep. Mike Speedy (R), Rep. Jerry Torr (R), Rep. William Friend (R)

Status: Died in the House Utilities, Energy and Telecommunications Committee

Position: CAC supports this bill

Description: This bill allows for third party purchasing of electricity. It also doubles the existing 1% peak summer generation cap for net metering to 2%. In addition, HB1624 enables virtual net metering, commonly known as meter aggregation.

 

 

Watching

SB2: Joint agency matters

SB33: Adoption of National Electric Code

SB127: Video service franchise fees

SB281: Broadband development

SB376: Rural electric membership corporation governance

SB478: Utility Easements

SB511: Water and wastewater utilities

HB1054: Taxation of natural gas

HB1073: Energy efficiency audits of state property

HB1172: Competitive Procurement by electric utilities

HB1188: Distributed Generation

HB1192: Broadband development

HB1208: Study of Water Utility Service

HB1285: Economic Development and Wind Turbines

HB1300: Free or reduced utility rates in incentive areas

HB1363: Tax credit for manufacture of energy devices

HB1531: Monthly service outage caps for electric utilities

HB1551: Water supply development and sustainability costs

HB1557: Municipal water utility liens

HB1567: Income tax deduction for water

HB1597: Location of wind turbine facilities

 

updated: Wednesday 4/12/17

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