Idaho Power Customers to Purchase Subscriptions Into Community Solar Project

Idaho Power applied on July 7 (Case Nos.IPC-E-16-13 and IPC-E-16-4) to build a 500-kilowatt (kW) community solar project, which would be paid for by allowing up to 1,093 residential customers and 470 non-residential customers to buy one or more $740 subscriptions for the 25-year life of the proposed project, the Idaho Public Utilities Commission (PUC) announced this week.

Each subscription would be equivalent to the purchase of a 320-watt solar panel. Subscribers would receive a bill credit based on their level of subscription and the actual generation from their portion of the solar array. The monthly bill credit would be limited to no more than the participant’s monthly usage, with excess production credited in a future month.

Idaho Power claims the solar array, proposed near its Boise Bench substation on the southwest corner of Amity and Holcomb roads, will cost about $1.16 million to build and $81,000 to connect to Idaho Power’s grid.

Under the filing, the utility’s shareholders would provide about 15 percent of the construction cost, or about $175,000 –with the rest to be paid by subscribers.

Completion of the project, if built, is anticipated in June 2017. The utility has 516,000 customers in Idaho and eastern Oregon. Those who don’t want to participate will not face any charges for the project, Idaho Power has pledged.

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