Bad News For Big Solar, A Bill Has Been Filed To Take Away Their Corporate Welfare

A Louisiana legislator has had enough of the corporate welfare that is being handed out to Louisiana’s solar industry. State Rep. Lance Harris (R-Alexandria) has filed HB 279, which brings to an end Louisiana’s solar tax credit on July 1st of this year. Previously, Big Solar was going to stay on welfare until the end of 2017. Harris, who also leads the Republican delegation in the state House, has not responded to a request to comment from The Hayride as of writing.

The bill comes in the wake of a study released by the Public Service Commission that revealed that the solar tax credit was ripping off Louisiana taxpayers. Big Solar and its affiliated organizations have been on the attack against the study ever since.

The solar industry has claimed that its industry supports 1200 jobs that wouldn’t exist without the subsidy. The Hayride computes that it works out to $4,654.76 per job per year.

Big Solar has a new game, which is to simply increase the number of jobs that are based on the solar tax credit. Here’s the new numbers that they’re claiming.

The solar industry needs to decide if it’s supporting 1200 jobs or 3600 jobs. My guess is, there will be another increase in the number of jobs that solar supports by the time this bill is heard in committee. They might claim 10,000 jobs are supported. It might be 30,000 jobs. The sky is the limit when you’re fighting for your corporate welfare.

The bill doesn’t deal with the scam known as net-metering. Net-metering works by mandating that solar customers sell their energy back to utilities at retail rates when the sun is shining and use the grid when the sun is not shining. This is like selling tomatoes I grow to the supermarket at retail prices. Prices have to go up for everyone else. Net metering needs to be at wholesale rates.

If Big Solar wants to claim they’re providing choice and helping people go off the grid, they would supported deregulation of utilities. Instead, they support corporate welfare and solar is one of the most heavily subsidized forms of energy in the country. In a free market, Big Solar wouldn’t survive.

Harris’s bill is a good one and hopefully will pass this session. However, the net metering scam needs to be addressed as well.



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