On Tuesday, February 12 the Montana Senate Energy Committee will consider a bill to raise the net metering cap and make several other important updates to the state’s net metering laws. The legislature needs to hear your voice on this bill.

SB 247, carried by Sen. Mike Phillips (D-Bozeman) will do three things. The bill only applies to NorthWestern Energy.

1. Raise the cap on net metered systems from 50 kW to 100 kW.
2. Allow customer generators to roll over any excess net meter credits, rather than forfeiting extra kilowatt hours to NorthWestern Energy at the end of the year.
3. Allow a customer generator to apply excess credits to separate meters on the same or adjacent property.

Click here to read the full text of the bill and keep track of its progress.

*38 states have net metering caps of 100 kW or higher–Montana is getting left behind. Installers are bumping up against this arbitrary 50 kW cap with both wind and solar systems.

*Montana’s net metering laws haven’t been updated since their near unanimous passage in 1999.
*Allowing indefinite rollover of credits means customer generators won’t have to giveaway excess kilowatt hours to the utility at the end of a 12 month billing period.
*This bill will give the 50+ small scale renewable energy businesses in the state the opportunity to continue growing and innovating.
*This is an chance to provide more good jobs for Montanans and more clean energy options for consumers.
*The data is in: net metering provides a net benefit to utility customers.

1. Write a letter to the editor. You can submit a letter at the following websites: Helena IRBillings Gazette  Great Falls Tribune  Missoulian  Flathead Beacon  Daily Inter Lake
2. Testify on Tuesday. The hearing will be at 3:00pm in room 317 of the Capitol. If you plan on testifying, please give me a heads up so we know who to expect.

3. Leave a message for Senate Energy Committee members by calling 444-4800. Send a message to committee members using this online form, or email them directly. Ask them to please support clean energy jobs by voting YES on SB 247.Senate Energy committee members 

Alan Olson, Chair (R-Roundup) [email protected]
Verdell Jackson, Vice-Chair (R-Kalispell) [email protected]
Ron Arthun (R-Wilsall) [email protected]
Robyin Driscoll (R-Billings) [email protected]
Jeff Essmann (R-Billings) [email protected]
Greg Jergeson (D-Chinook) [email protected]
Llew Jones (R-Conrad) [email protected]
Christine Kaufmann (D-Helena) [email protected]
Jason Priest (R-Red Lodge) [email protected]
Mitch Tropilla (D-Great Falls) [email protected]
Chas Vincent (R-Libby) [email protected]
Ed Walker (R-Billings) [email protected]
Cliff Larsen (D-Missoula) [email protected]
NorthWestern Energy is firmly opposed to this bill and we need your help to ensure it gets a fair hearing.