What is the best route for us to push this in Minnesota? What are key hurdles or barriers?

A:
  • You do NOT need legislation to offer this. Every utility has the authority to offer terms of service to make investments in a certain location and recover costs from there. There are precedents for it happening without legislation.

  • Utilities that are subject to Utilities Commission oversight are profit-driven (so without oversight they might offer energy services at an unfair price). This means they have a social compact. The state energy office in MN and utilities commissions want to know about programs like this.

  • The first movers of programs like PAYS have been electric cooperatives. Electric co-ops are not leaders in every state, but those that have gotten organized move faster than those with regulatory hoops like investor-owned utilities.

  • You would be well matched to go into a direct dialogue with a for-profit utility, but you'll want to be prepared.

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