Mass. Solar Industry Stakeholders and Legislators Discuss Net Metering Caps

(Front Row:  l-r) Lisa Podgurski – IBEW 103/NECA Boston, Former State Rep Maryanne Lewis, Christopher Sheldon – Southern Light Solar, Michael Morris – Beacon Strategies, Larry Aller –Next Step Living (Top row :  l-r) Rob Brouillard – Mass Electric Construction, John Gill – All-Pro Electric, John Gallagher – Sullivan and McLaughlin Companies

Front row: (l-r) Lisa Podgurski with former State Rep. Maryanne Lewis; Christopher Sheldon, Southern Light Solar; Michael Morris, Beacon Strategies; Larry Aller, Next Step Living. Back row: (l-r) Rob Brouillard, Mass Electric Construction; John Gill, All-Pro Electric; John Gallagher, Sullivan & McLaughlin Companies

Boston, MA – Solar energy advocates representing the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) Boston Chapter, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 103, and solar energy developer Next Step Living, met with Massachusetts legislators at the State House in Boston on May 21 to discuss the importance of immediately lifting the net metering caps, an issue that, according to solar industry leaders, puts the vibrant Massachusetts solar industry at risk. Their message was simple: Raising the caps as soon as possible will allow the legislature time to review and act on the state’s Net Metering and Solar Task Force recommendations, and will enable cost-effective, long-term solar policy.

Representatives from NECA/IBEW electrical contracting firms Sullivan & McLaughlin Companies, Mass Electric Construction, and All-Pro Electric, were joined by NECA/IBEW Business Development Director Lisa Podgurski and NECA Boston Assistant Manager Kristen Gowin, meeting with Massachusetts State Senator Ryan Fattman, Rep. Tackey Chan, Rep. Dan Donahue, Rep. Paul Brodeur, Rep. Leonard Mirra, and Rep. Claire Cronin in an effort to spur immediate action by the state to raise the state’s net metering caps. The group was joined by solar companies Next Step Living and Southern Light Solar as well as NECA and IBEW legislative consultants Beacon Strategies and Liberty Square Group in the solar lobbying effort. Podgurski serves on the state’s Net Metering and Solar Task Force, appointed by Governor Charlie Baker to research alternatives to the current net metering cap system.
Massachusetts currently has solar installations totaling 776 MW of renewable electric capacity, according to the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources. Nearly 270 MW of solar capacity were installed in the state in 2014.