2015-12-16 15:06:31 -0500
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Solar power provides a lot of benefits to the grid--it makes the grid more resilient, and studies have shown that rooftop solar reduces costs for all ratepayers, not just homes with solar. However, the rates that utilities charge reflect not just the cost of electricity, but also the cost of maintaining the grid and transmitting electricity to you. Some utilities are concerned that solar homeowners aren't paying their "fair share" of maintenance and transmission fees, and they want to implement monthly fees to make up for it.
The good news is, in areas where utilities have tried to implement fixed monthly charges (including Wisconsin, Iowa, and California), they haven't been approved. And even if they are eventually implemented, existing solar homeowners would likely be "grandfathered in," and charges would only be applied to people who haven't yet gone solar.