#ncga: Movement in Senate on solar goon giveaway

HB589 — a veritable jackpot and smorgasbord for solar goons and other related special interests — sailed through the House earlier this month.  It went to the Senate on the 8th and sat there quietly in the Rules Committee until the 23rd.  

It’s been sent to the Senate Finance Committee for review.  If it gets approved there, it goes back to the Rules Committee.

This is where the rubber meets the road.  This is where we see if Jones Street’s upper chamber is as bought-and-paid-for as the lower chamber is. 

16 thoughts on “#ncga: Movement in Senate on solar goon giveaway

  1. This is also where we see if Phil Berger has totally transformed from Jekyll into Hyde. This session, there has been nothing conservative out of Berger. He betrayed us on HB2. He gave his stamp of approval to a big spending pork barrel budget. Will he now betray our electric ratepayers for greedy, liberal, and obnoxious special interests? Senator Berger, the ball is in your court. This will either show you have gone over to the liberals or it will show that you still have some conservative common sense.

  2. You know they are, just look at how much money the commercial fishing industry got from Bill Cook last week. For revenue created, the commercial fishing industry is the most subsidized industry in NC. Tax payers have paid as much as a million dollars a year for mandated observers so gillnetters can work. What other industry can leave their operating gear on public property and then have tax payers pay the same folks to go back and clean up their mess.

    For a supposed tax payer watch group you sure have a blind eye for this industry. So maybe the legislature is not the only ones bought off. Then there is the Coastal Federation that handles the subsidy transfers between the state and the fishermen. Have you ever stopped to count what they get to dispense the subsidy?

    1. Those observers are subsidies for the radical environmentalists who demand these spies, NOT for the commercial fishing industry.

    2. I have a great idea. Fire the observers and let’s see if gill netters “can work”.

  3. So here we are after the tax payers have already signed on to a tax liability of $2 billion through tax credits that were finally stopped by Berger and McCrory last year. Boo-Hoo – $2 billion in tax liabilities and much more in terms of local property tax breaks (80% reduction) and whopping high “avoided cost” rates approved by our Public Utilities Commission (PUC) weren’t enough for this industry that boasts of thousands of fictitious jobs (have you EVER seen anyone working at one of those solar “farms” you drive by?). Also thanks to our solar-loving PUC NC offers the guarantee that we ratepayers buy solar output regardless if we need it our not nor whether it is cheapest or not. In fact, we are shutting or turning down coal and nuclear units now to make room on our grid for solar power we do not need because the PUC told Duke and Dominion to buy it.

    Also remember that Duke just came in with a request to increase our rates by some 17% to pay for costs they have already incurred accommodating more solar than any other state in the country except CA (we may even be beating them on a per-capita basis). Duke also said they would be coming in with another rate hike of some 20% next year for more grid modernization needed for solar. They have not yet asked for more money to cover the ash costs.

    Now, we have this – a bill that every solar lobbyist and Duke absolutely loves! A bill that was negotiated without anyone there to represent the residential ratepayer. Remember, Duke makes some 11% profit on any capital project – including solar and gas plants needed to back solar up.

    I am trying to make sense out of some of the lobbyists’ statements. I think when they say, we would pay more than without the bill, and when they say we will save $850 million, that they are saying the same thing. That is, if the current public utilities commission (PUC) policy stays like it is, we will overpay $850 million more than we are already overpaying. Duke testified and so did Dominion, that under current PUC policy, NC goes well beyond all other states in the US in implementing PURPA – a federal law that seeks to encourage certain types of electricity generators – by (1) granting non-negotiated contracts to solar farms greater than 100kW (all the way up to 5000kW) that requires us to buy the power whether we need it or not, and (2) over paying for electricity generated by solar farms by using an outdated electricity rate. As a consequence of these two, Duke and Dominion said we have been over paying by $1.4 billion ALREADY. The first of these will be fixed by this bill but the second will be extended.

    So, in a sense, this is what they are saying – folks, the PUC really, really, messed up so far and you ratepayers have been left with an over-payment of $1.4 billion in addition to a $2 billion tax liability.. Guess what, with this bill you all will be over charged some more – a lot more because we are going to extend the too-high rate the PUC awarded some years ago for 18 months longer (at least). BUT – good news, the over charge will not be quite as high in the future because we are going to finally use the same cutoff (100 kW instead of 5000 kW) as the rest of the country. Now, why don’t you support this bill?

    1. German residential electric customers now pay three times what NC electric customers do, thanks to going wild on solar and wind. Our corrupt Solyndra Republicans in the General Assembly, along with all the Democrats, are pointing our own state in that same direction. Shame on them. We need to take names and kick a$$ in the primaries.

      Conservative Rep, Chris Millis put in a bill to phase out the corrupt renewable energy mandate in NC. but liberal Rep, John Szoka led the charge of the Solyndra Republicans to kill it in committee. Szoka badly needs to be taken down in the next election at all costs.. He seems to be the head spear carrier for the Solyndra Republicans.

    2. While most of your information is accurate and on point, you incorrectly give credit for killing the solar tax credits, Berger had little to do with that and McCrory even less. What really happened was that a group of about 20 House conservatives got together, and sent a representative to Tim Moore and told him that all of them adamantly refused to vote for the budget unless the solar credits were removed. Moore cried uncle and the solar credits were deleted. Maybe legislative conservatives in both chambers need to do more of that. The rank and file legislators killed that monster, not the leadership.

  4. Ray, Ray, Ray. No matter how many times you tell a lie, it still will not be the truth. No matter how many times Robber Robin Hayes takes out-of-state money from the CCA, and broadcasts it around Raleigh, the truth is still the truth, and your lies are still lies.

  5. The commercial fishing industry voluntarily agreed to pay TWICE the amount of our license fee to pay for Lying Louis’ “observer program”. Your illicit funding, spread around by “supposed” conservatives, will not make your lies, Truth. You, your cohorts, and your organization are pathological liars. We are going to use every opportunity to continue to expose you. Run, like a roach. The Light of Truth is coming. Make sure to send this to Robin, Woodhouse, Sneed, Chuckie, knight, Adams, Davis, Yarborough, Hamilton, and all the rest who think by changing kitchy names of your organization’s won’t expose the same bunch of liars. Coming out of the closet is going to be something you rue. Own it.

  6. President Obama’s green energy legacy RULES! With the help of NC Republican legislators we will save the polar bears by making your electric rates, to use President Obama;s own words “necessarily skyrocket”.

    We have already demonstrated that the NC House GOP leadership belongs to us, and now we will demonstrate that we own the NC Senate GOP leadership, too. They may be “green” in a different way than we are, but if it preserves President Obama’s green energy legacy, who cares? We are green because we really care about saving the polar bears. They are green because they like the green money we give them. These guys have no qualms about selling out their own party platform and their own redneck voters if we dangle enough money in front of them.

    Our success in buying control of your legislature started with our hard core environmental movement buying those two progressive Republican consultants Stewart and Shumaker, and we have gotten more and more of your Republicans hooked onto our payroll as time went on. We hated that those Civitas stinkers outed our buying Shumaker and Stewart, but in the end it did not matter, Even though that was known, the rest of our plans still fell into place.

    We do not care how these green Republicans spend our green money. Jason Saine can use it to buy all the fancy clothers and take all the nive trips he wants, as long as he stays bought. That gores for all of them.

  7. Here is the NCGOP platform, just adopted, on this issue:

    .” The state’s renewable energy mandate should be eliminated and market forces be allowed to guide us in the use of alternative sources and energy independence”

    Rep. Chris Millis stood strong for Republican principles with his bill to phase out the renewable energy mandate. Szoka and his allies worked against GOP principles when they opposed the Millis bill.

    H589 is pure crony capitalism, the opposite of the market forces of the free market that are the Republican principles called for in dealing with alternative energy. Those legislators who vote for H589 are voting AGAINST Republican principles. They need to be primaried and removed from office.

    We need more legislators like Chris Millis who stand for Republican principles and fewer like John Szoka, who are bought and paid for flunkies for the special interests. We do not need anti-free market statists representing us in Raleigh.

  8. NC needs to be a leader in renewable energy. We are well positioned to do so with lots of potential solar energy and some wind energy sources. It would be great to be a national leader in something good and needed.

    1. Do you just like paying a lot more for electricity or what? Solar and wind are expensive and undependable. Our electric ratepayers do not need to subsidize these greedy and demanding special interests and neither should our taxpayers. Being a leader in wind and solar has meant that German ratepayers pay three times what our NC ratepayers do, and that industries are starting to leave Germany for places with cheaper electricity, impacting jobs.

      Do you like distributing a lot of hazardous substances around our state, including close to schools and residential neighborhoods? Both solar panels and wind turbines contain dangerous materials.
      Here is an example of the crap that is in wind turbines:

      Do you like killing birds? The wind turbines in particular do a lot of that. Is slaughtering our birds being environmentally responsible?

  9. Hey Todd, I agree! Lets fire all the observers, the LEO’s get enough observer coverage without extra cost. The problem here is theres people speaking on here that know absolutely nothing about the observer program. According to Ray, taxpayer’s dollars are supporting this program, WRONG ANSWER!! Anyone heard of the Commercial Fishing Fund Board? I’ll let yall know the date of the next public meeting so most of you can get educated!!

  10. Andrew….how many officers with the DMF are being used for “observers” each week to monitor gillnetters because of the agreement the state made to let you gillnets continue to work in NC where your nets have been banned in other states? The purpose of a law enforcement officer is not to baby sit people who refused to self report and then found themselves in a pickle with the FEDS.

    I know all about the deal that the NCFA carved out in Raleigh to raise commercial fishing license fees on every commercial fishermen for the benefit of gillnetters, even if that fishermen never set a gillnet. Your sins penalized every commercial fisherman in the state.

    Data clearly shows that your license funds are not paying for all the observer activity and more importantly the data shows that NC remains in violation of the ITP and perhaps now is the time and place to declare intent to sue so that NC either gets back in compliance or bans the nets like every state from here to Texas does.

    The Commercial Fishing Fund Board was set up to decide what to do with funds not used by observers from those funds. Since the required observation funding has not gone down and the assessment on the license fees was done to receive the necessary money and the renewal last year of licenses was down almost a third, are you still going to stand there and tell me that this “self imposed” fee on all commercial fishermen for the benefit of the gillnetters is still raising enough money to pay for observers when originally the assessment was based on zero shrinkage of renewals? It doesn’t and the auditors of NC are looking at it as I speak. So maybe you need to see how much more gillnetters can raise to cover the fees you cause the state each year.

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