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Solar Companies Fret About DWP Rebate Switch

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Solar companies say they're worried demand for solar panels will fall if a Department of Water & Power proposal to reduce rebates to homeowners and companies passes, reports the Los Angeles Business Journal. "The city’s power agency claims the rebate program has exceeded its $33 million annual budget for this year and next, and also notes that the cost of solar panels has dropped sharply. As a result, the DWP is proposing a 30 percent cut in rebates to residential and small business customers for solar panel installation....Ken Button, president of Verengo Solar Plus, an Orange-based solar roof panel installer that does about 40 percent of its business in Los Angeles, said that the DWP proposal would add about $4,000 in up-front, out-of-pocket costs for a typical homeowner." The DWP defends itself by saying that the solar panel expenses have dropped, and the rebate program has become so popular that $70 million in rebates would have to be paid out if all the applications were accepted, " more than twice the $33 million annual budget for the program."For a comparison, Southern California Edison’s solar rebates are half of the DWP’s rebates, according to the LABJ.
· Solar Businesses Burned by DWP [LABJ]