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Avista wants to expand metering program

| June 6, 2010 9:00 PM

Avista Utilities is asking the Idaho Public Utilities Commission for authority to increase the size of small customer-owned generation projects that can qualify for the company's net metering program.

Currently, customers owning projects up to a capacity of 25 kilowatts are eligible to receive credits for the generation they produce on solar, wind, biomass or hydropower projects. Avista wants to increase the size of projects that can qualify to 100 kilowatts. The commission is taking customer comment on the proposal through June 17.

Customers who generate their own electricity can have their generation credited from their monthly billings. Those who produce more than they consume, can have their excess kilowatt-hours applied to future billing periods to reduce their bills. At the end of the calendar year, any unused kilowatt-hour credits are granted to the company without compensation to the customer-generator.

Avista allows customers to enroll as net metering customers on a first-come, first-served basis.

The commission plans to handle the request in a modified procedure that uses written comments rather than conducting a hearing, unless customer comments can demonstrate a need for a public hearing. Comments are accepted through June 17 via e-mail by accessing the commission's homepage at and clicking on "Comments & Questions." Fill in the case number (AVU-E-10-02) and enter your comments. Comments can also be mailed to P.O. Box 83720, Boise, ID 83720-0074 or faxed to (208) 334-3762.

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