OH: PUCO seeks input on net metering rules


The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio has scheduled a workshop on May 5th to allow additional input from stakeholders in developing net metering rules. After the workshop, PUCO may release revised rules for comment. The workshop (12-2050-EL-ORD) comes after months of appeals and courtroom drama in reaction to a May 2014 PUCO order adopting revised net metering rules. Those rules re-emphasized that the monthly carry-over rate for net excess generation includes both the capacity and energy components, and that as a “monopoly service” provided by utilities, any net metering costs should be recovered in the utility’s base rates. AEP and FirstEnergy appealed the May 2014 decision to the Ohio Supreme Court in September, taking issue with (1) the lack of a size limitation on turbine quality limitation on net metering systems; (2) the assumption that a customer that generates 120% of its annual electricity requirements is intending to primarily offset part or all of its electricity requirements; (3) the inclusion of capacity costs in the monthly carryover rate; and (4) the lack of an explicit utility cost-recovery mechanism. In November 2014, PUCO withdrew its rule request from the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review (JCARR) and the Supreme Court granted a stay in the appeal case.