The LA Times reports that Republican Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin has issued an executive order on the legislation recently passed which imposes a roof top solar fee like that approved by the Arizona Corporation Commission in November of 2013. The article states that constituents who align themselves with Tea Party and Libertarian ideas feel the additional fee is an imposed tax that limits free market choices. The difference between Oklahoma and Arizona is that the voters are loud enough to oust a Governor for inaction, while Republican Arizona Governor Jan Brewer is not seeking re-election.
The Arizona Corporation Commission only has jurisdiction over Arizona “Public” Service, because it is not an entity of the public, like SRP, but rather -a holding company that trades its commodity on the market and has privately held investors as well as publicly traded stock through parent company Pinnacle West Capital Corp.
Unable to control the abundant energy available from renewable energy solutions, and to secure their own profits, those who paid high costs and invested heavily in the utility systems we rely on each morning must slow the pace of the advancing energy independence or find other ways to maximize their profits. In order to guarantee rates of return and keep investing dollars rolling in, large utilities and investors rely on organizations like the American Legislation Exchange Council to create and promote policies which strengthen the oligopolies that control the nations power and resources. The policies are passed into state level laws or adopted by governing bodies such as the Arizona Corporation Commission.
The organization of fossil and nuclear fuel dominated private sector members and state appointed or elected legislator members, American Legislation Exchange Council (ALEC), is largely funded and influenced through the multi-billion dollar petro-chemical industry giants, Koch Industries. Three Arizona Corporation Commissioners (Brenda Burns, Bob Stump, and Bob Burns) are members of ALEC, with commissioner Gary Pierce aligned completely with the outrageous original $50-$100/month fee requested by APS. Citing financial or economical reasons, APS stated it left ALEC in April 2012. However, in November of 2012 APS did pay substantial membership fees to the Energy, Environment, and Agriculture Task Force operated by ALEC.
Like a junkie that keeps going back for a fix, we only fantasize about the clarity sobriety of energy independence offers. Our manufacturer, dealer, and pimp of vice; those who control power and resources -have little interest in our advancement toward more beneficial and healthier options. It is the struggle of economics, the have to much and want more versus the wants a fair chance.
Measured by a cost benefit analysis of profits and losses for the multitude of impacted local small businesses, can the public know if our governing bodies are correctly upholding their obligations and the interests of Arizona voters? What do your local solar supporters balance sheets indicate? Are revenues on the rise? Are solar industry jobs on the rise? Are ad’s for new electrical journeymen dominating the employment sections of local media? Are solar investments funneling into the state of Arizona? Does a year over year comparison show a negative impact?
Congratulations to small business owners of Oklahoma. The governor’s executive order to limit fees to a “last resort option” is a small nudge toward energy independence and the free market system that organizations like ALEC purport. Or, is it just pandering to an election cycle which happens to have an unrecompensed benefit to the solar industry?
G&S Electric Inc. wants our customers to be educated about the influences on their ability to benefit from solar energy. We are a small business of top rated solar installers and have the best rated electricians in the valley. We continue to stand for Arizona solar solutions and hope we return to the policies that would have made Arizona a global leader in the adoption of roof top solar and renewable energy through solar resources.
Choose solar. Choose Energy Independence. Choose Prosperity for Arizona.