Minnesota Regulators Schedule Hearings on Frontier Communications’ Anti-Competition Actions

Date: 7 Jun 2018 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

National ISPs with millions of customers are some of the most hated companies in the U.S. Poor customer service, contract tricks, and a refusal to upgrade services are only a few of the common complaints from subscribers who are often trapped due to lack of competition. Frontier Communications is proudly carrying on that tradition of deficiency in Minnesota. In fact, the company’s excellence at skullduggery has drawn the attention of the state’s Public Utilities Commission (PUC), which launched an investigation into the service quality of Frontier this spring.… Read More

Supporting Affordable Residential Access to Community Solar in Minnesota

Date: 3 May 2018 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In April, ILSR submitted comments in support of affordable residential access to community solar for review by Minnesota’s Public Utilities Commission. These comments concerned a proposed residential adder framework outlined as part of the state’s community solar program and Minnesota Department of Commerce Value of Solar calculation. We argue that, in a recent analysis submitted to the Commission by Xcel Energy, the utility exaggerated costs likely to be incurred under this new framework. Our comments support those made by allies such as Cooperative Energy Futures and advocate for adder calculations that ensure financeability and broad participation among residential subscribers to the state’s community solar program.… Read More

Utility Proposes Electric Vehicle Charging Pilot, But Will Anyone Opt In for No Benefit?

Date: 1 Mar 2018 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

A Minnesota utility proposes a new program allowing electric vehicle owners to charge their vehicles at night for a lower price, but monthly maintenance fees mean drivers won’t save any money. ILSR provides comments to the state’s Public Utilities Commission illustrating the problem and proposing a solution.… Read More

Community Solar and Value of Solar Under Review in Minnesota

Date: 2 Feb 2018 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

With a nation-leading community solar program, changes to the compensation scheme for participants shouldn’t be taken lightly. ILSR offered these comments to the MN Public Utilities Commission in February 2018 about preserving high values for the state’s “value of solar” calculation.… Read More

New Year’s Resolutions for Utility Regulators

Date: 22 Dec 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Shocking investigative reports published late in 2017 highlight our longstanding concerns about deficient oversight of growing utility monopolies. This set of New Year’s resolutions we drafted would help utility regulatory commissioners keep their charges in check.… Read More

Paying Utilities for Performance

Date: 22 Dec 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In most states with regulated, monopoly utilities, utilities are compensation based on two factors: energy sales and a return on capital spent, such as when they build a new power plant. In comments filed in late December, 2017, ILSR provides some context for basing utility compensation for its shareholders on actual performance.… Read More

California Lawmakers Vote Against Rural Constituents for High-Quality Broadband Access

Date: 29 Sep 2017 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

California Legislators have turned on their constituents living in rural areas who want to participate in the 21st century online economy. What began as a move in the right direction – allocating substantial resources to funding high-speed Internet infrastructure – … Read More

Xcel Has Room for Renewable Generation on its Minnesota Grid. So Where Is It?

Date: 24 Apr 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Determining exactly how much local renewable generation can reach Xcel Energy customers in Minnesota hinges in part on how many of these projects the existing grid can accommodate. To that end, the state’s Public Utilities Commission compelled the utility last … Read More

Residential Subscribers in Focus as Minnesota Weighs Community Solar Incentives

Date: 22 Apr 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In its filing on providing community solar incentives for residential subscribers, the Department outlined a loose framework for the “adder,” designed to encourage community solar developers to pursue projects accessible that target residential subscribers. The agency pitched an incentive worth … Read More

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