Solar Costs

 From: Tim Echols
Sent: Sunday, March 3, 2019 7:52 AM
To: Jerry Roseberry

StandBy Fees


Mayor Roseberry,


I understand you all have a little controversy brewing out there. I feel your pain. 

I did want to let you know from a GA Public Service Commission perspective how we have viewed both big and small solar projects.

The big ones have helped GMA cities and County governments immensely in the tax digest, and for entities in Ga Power territory the solar has come in so cheap it has put downward pressure on rates.

As to the small rooftop arrays, we have found the stand by fees and demand charges to have a chilling effect on new arrays. Central GA EMC dropped their fees and went to a time-of-use rate for those with solar, which resolved the controversy. GA Power created a special buy-back rate. Talk to George down there for more info.

I know it seems counter intuitive that solar can actually provide benefit to a community when customers start generating their own power, but there are several. First, as they feed elections back on grid, you guys will get those at wholesale. You can brag about clean power and use it in your PR material.

Second, your utility dept might eventually sell or broker the arrays to customers with golden credit. GA Power actually stood up a solar panel division to sell arrays to customers on their unregulated side. They are making money at it.

All that said, very few people spend the $20,000 to get an array, so the risk to you all is very small with the positives making it a wash, in my opinion. The time-of-use rate is the best way forward if you have the meter technology.

Commissioner Tim Echols


"Collaboration Enables Acceleration"


244 Washington St SW, Room 232

Atlanta, GA 30334


On Mon, Mar 4, 2019 at 5:20 PM


Commissioner Echols,


Thank you for your thoughts and insights regarding solar projects and distributed generation rates.

First and foremost, the City of Oxford is supportive of solar or any future technology in Distributed Generation (DG) that will come.


Also, we as a public power community have always focused on providing reliable and low-cost electricity to our customers with effective local control by elected officials. We believe that we have been successful in carrying out those duties by having a diverse fuel portfolio, a watchful eye on costs, and through fair and equitable rates. We are proud to provide nearly 80% of our energy generated by carbon emission-free sources (i.e. hydro, nuclear).

As a city, we work hard to represent our entire customer base, therefore we have electric rates in place that are fair and equitable to our customers. DG customers have the opportunity to receive a credit for excess energy sold to our city; the fair value of DG's excess generation is the same as our incremental generation cost which is the avoided cost. Additionally, the customers not utilizing DG should not subsidize the cost of the customers with DG. It is reasonable to expect all City of Oxford customer to equitably share fixed costs to have generation and grid assets available when DG assets are not producing.

With that said, we know that technology, policies and advancement in rate making are rapidly evolving. We pledge to continue to evaluate and reassess our rates to be fair to all customers. 


Thanks again,

Jerry D. Rosenberry



From: Tim Echols  
Sent: Monday, March 4, 2019 5:29 PM
To: Jerry Roseberry
Subject: Re: StandBy Fees


Thanks for getting back with me, and keep up the great work.