NET Metering UPDATE (5/9/17)
The Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) has concluded their “value of solar” discussions (docket) and have developed methods for AZ electric utilities to compensate their customers for installing distributed generation (PV, Wind, etc.) at their homes and businesses. In October the SSVEC approved SSVEC’s rate case except for how to compensate for distributed generation (DG) waiting until the value of solar docket was completed. It is anticipated that the ACC will conclude the SSVEC rate case sometime between now and the 4th quarter of 2017. SSVEC has submitted all the required documents for the ACC to come to a decision but we are waiting to “get on their schedule” so we can complete our rate case.
If you install or reserve a DG system prior to the completion of our rate case you will be allowed to use the current Net Metering method where you get retail credit for excess consumption on an annual basis and SSVEC acts as a very efficient battery. Those members who install or reserve a DG system after the completion of our rate case will receive monthly credits for their excess kWh based on the “export rate” as set by the ACC.
Interconnection reservations will be valid for 6 months from the time SSVEC receives the document. It does not commit you to installing a system; it just locks you into the old net metering framework if the system is installed within the 6 month period.
The 2017 REST plan
The 2017 Incentives are as follows:
- Solar Water Heating is 25 cents per the annual kWh saved (OG-300 certified)
SSVEC collects a Renewable Energy Surcharge from each of its customers based on their kWh usage and with a maximum amount collected based on your rate class. These funds are collected on a monthly basis and are used to fund the SunWatts program. Operation expenses include program incentives, debt service for the PV for schools program, and other program costs. The SunWatts program is reviewed and approved by the ACC annually.
Interconnection to the SSVEC distribution system is subject to the following in addition to the physical interconnection requirements.
➢ SSVEC’s electricity rates, basic charges and service fees are subject to change. Future adjustments to these items may positively or negatively impact any potential savings or the value of your photovoltaic system.
➢ You will be responsible for paying any future increases to electricity rates, basic charges or service fees from SSVEC.
➢ Your photovoltaic system is subject to the current rates, rules and regulations established by the Arizona Corporation Commission (“Commission”). The Commission may alter its rules and regulation and/or change rates in the future, and if this occurs, your system is subject to those changes.
➢ Any future electricity rate projections presented to you by sales agents are not approved by SSVEC or the Commission. They are based on projections formulated by external third parties not affiliated with SSVEC or the Commission.
Recommended course of Installation
1) Fill out and submit a SunWatts interconnection reservation form.
2) Request a Net Zero Sizing report from SSVEC (not needed for Solar Water Heating).
a) This will help you determine the optimal system size based on the current Net Metering Regulations.
3) Get multiple bids for the installation of the PV or Solar Water Heating System.
a) SSVEC will be happy to review these bids and answer any questions you might have.
b) If you are looking at a system lease please review our special handout on leasing.
4) Choose your contractor.
5) Contractor installs the system and submits required documents to SSVEC.
6) SSVEC inspects the system and installs the proper metering.
SunWatts Self-Install Requirements
If you choose to self-install your PV system you still have to provide all the documentation (1-line and 3-line drawings, forms, etc…) as any other PV installation. For self-installed systems the PV system must also be certified as meeting our requirements by an AZ licensed electrical contractor who must fill out all section 2 forms pages 1, 2, and 3.
Additional information and documentation is required for any self-installed system. You must provide receipts for all components you purchased for the system. You may include mileage to pick up parts as an allowable cost component (mileage to match with receipts). The cost for the electrician to certify the system is also an allowable cost. The most important thing to remember is per IRS regulations; your labor is not an allowable cost to be used to determine the total system cost. SSVEC reserves the right to reject receipts that do not clearly belong in the project.
SSVEC monitors the installation cost as a requirement of the ACC. Beginning with the 2014 REST program the system cost has no impact on the amount of incentive SSVEC pays to the member.
The ACC approved SSVEC Net Metering Tariff which is based on the Net Meter Rules which became effective on May 23, 2009. Members who have renewable generation sources may participate in Net Metering. There is a $2.70 per month charge to pay for the incremental cost increase in the billing meter.
Per the current Net Metering rules you will receive retail credit for each kWh you send back to the grid up to the amount of kWh purchased from SSVEC in the billing month with any excess being saved for future use. The Net Metering regulations require that SSVEC “true-up” the account once per year which is done in September. In the “true up” month all excess kWh (that is kWh you have produced but not consumed in the last 12 months) will be purchased by SSVEC at the avoided cost and will show as a credit on your bill.
The avoided cost is calculated by SSVEC and then reviewed and approved by the ACC annually (to be effective on September 1 each year), and is based on the 12 month average wholesale cost ending the previous June.
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