Environmental and solar industry advocates ask Georgia energy regulators to reduce upper limit on Georgia Power profits
Environmental and solar industry advocates asked Georgia energy regulators Thursday to reduce the upper limit on profits Georgia Power will be allowed to earn and force the utility to pursue solar energy more aggressively. Georgia Power’s so-called “earnings band” and how to implement two of the utility’s solar power programs were the only issues left unresolved by an agreement on a proposed rate increase the utility reached Wednesday with the state Public Service Commission’s Public Interest Advocacy Staff. The settlement, which the commission will vote on next week, would reduce the rate hike Georgia Power requested in June by 40%, from $2.9 billion to about $1.8 billion. Representatives of environmental groups and the solar energy industry complained that Georgia Power is falling behind in pursuing solar energy. Specifically, they called on the PSC to force the utility to expand its rooftop solar pilot program, which is capped at 5,000 customers, and offer participants in its Community Solar Program higher compensation to stimulate participation.
A Bogart man has died after being struck while walking along Cleveland Road in west Athens. Athens Clarke County Police say a 2013 Toyota SUV was traveling north when it struck 44 year old Richard Shawn Hatcher who was also walking in the northbound lane around 6:25 pm Wednesday. Police say conditions were dark and raining and that Hatcher was wearing dark clothing. The driver stopped at the scene and called police. No charges have been filed. The death was the 11th fatality on Athens-Clarke roads this year.