End of popular credit program has impact on solar companies

Published: Mar. 28, 2016 at 9:56 AM HST
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HONOLULU (AP) - A solar industry group says the state's decision to end a popular solar incentive program has led some companies in the industry to lay off workers or reduce employee hours.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports that the Hawaii Solar Energy Association says the end of the net energy metering program has caused a decrease in the number of homeowners getting rooftop solar systems. Ten of 16 companies surveyed by the association say they have reduced staff or plan to in the future.

In January 2015, Hawaiian Electric Co. asked for permission to drop its solar incentive program, which credits customers the full retail rate for any excess energy their systems send to the grid. The Public Utilities Commission agreed to the request in October.

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