Wisconsin Legislature may consider a bill allowing third-party financing for solar power

Wisconsin state legislators are currently drafting a bill that would allow a third-party to own a renewable power source used by a business that cannot finance its own renewable power projects, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Currently, Wisconsin does not allow a third party to own power generation sources, such as solar panels on the roof of a retail store, the Journal Sentinel stated. Many companies in other states are having solar panels or other renewable energy resources built on their property by a third party and then purchasing the energy through a long-term power purchase agreement.

According to the Journal Sentinel, the bill would exempt owners of renewable generation at a home or business from being regulated as a public utility, allowing renewable energy companies to pay the upfront costs for the installation of the power generation source with the customer paying a fixed price over time for the power generated by the panels.

Although the proposal is backed by a group of clean energy companies and the Wisconsin Farmers Union, it also faces opposition from the lobbying group for Wisconsin’s electric utilities, according to the report from the Journal Sentinel.

The legislation is being introduced by Wisconsin Rep. Chris Taylor (D-Madison) and Rep. Gary Tauchen (R-Bonduel).

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