With the increasing affordability of renewable energy systems, the debate over net metering policies is also increasing, according to a recent Gongwer Ohio Report. Ohio Senate Public Utilities Committee Chairman Bill Seitz (R-Cincinnati) asked the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) “to revisit the issue during a recent hearing of the Energy Mandates Study Committee.” At issue is the compensation customers receive for the excess power they generate and sell back to the grid. Utilities in several states are asking for limits on net metering, “arguing that independent producers aren’t paying their fair share for the infrastructure that allows them to return excess power to the system.” The PUCO is currently defending its net metering rules in a case before the state Supreme Court; those rules “reimburse customers with distributed generation facilities at the standard service offer rate.” AEP argues in a lawsuit that those regulations “are unfair because they require utilities to provide credits calculated at the utility’s SSO generation rate, which rate reflects not only the cost of energy but also the costs of other components such as capacity.” Sen. Seitz is considering an option to allow utilities “to help finance an alternative energy project in return for purchasing the electricity it generates at a reduced rate that was negotiated between the two parties.” The PUCO will hold a workshop on May 5 “to consider potential revisions.”