Representative Cynthia Thielen addresses H.B. No. 2121, Renewable Energy Systems

Representative Cynthia Thielen addresses Stand. Comm. Rep. No. 592-12 H.B. No. 2121, H.D. 1 RELATING TO RENEWABLE ENERGY. (Renewable Energy Systems; Government Contracts; GO Bonds) AS AMENDED, PASS SECOND READING, REFER TO FINANCE

The purpose of this bill is to promote the government’s use of renewable energy technologies by:
• Prohibiting government agencies from contracting with private energy providers that claim the renewable energy technologies tax credit;
• Authorizing the issuance of general obligation bonds to purchase renewable energy systems for state facilities.

This bill would undermine the benefits of power purchase agreements between government agencies and the private sector. These partnerships significantly reduce utility expenses for agencies with no up-front costs for the State. Testimony was overwhelmingly opposed to this measure.
According to DOE, this measure would significantly delay installation of renewable energy systems at schools. It would require $160 million in general obligation bonds to complete installations of photovoltaic systems statewide, and energy savings would be offset by debt service. Power purchase agreements, by contrast, can reduce DOE’s energy costs by 50 percent at current rates, with no up-front costs for the State.


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