Company wants to gut solar energy program
Idaho families deserve a comfortable, affordable home that lasts a lifetime. As homebuilders, we focus on building your family a home that uses the least amount of energy while maximizing comfort and quality. One of the best ways to do this is to capture the sun's free energy saving you money on power bills, while tapping into Idaho's own energy resources.
Unfortunately, Idaho Power is proposing to gut an important program for building energy-independent homes. The net metering program allows homeowners the ability to capture the sun's energy through solar panels to offset their energy bills. Flynner Building Co. uses this program to create "net-zero energy" homes - meaning zero energy bills, and zero energy pollution.
If Idaho Power gets its way - with larger fixed fees and eliminating surplus energy credits - it may cost you more to own a home that uses less energy and causes fewer impacts to Idaho's beautiful environment. To Flynner, this is a step in the wrong direction. Solar energy delivers a high value product when Idaho needs energy most, hot summer afternoons. Instead of penalizing quality homes, we want a fair deal from Idaho Power.
SCOTT FLYNN, Flynner Building Co., Boise
Group seeks fairness from Idaho Power
Energy is fundamental to the Idaho way of life, with access to cheap, safe, and reliable power contributing to Idaho's high quality of life and low cost of business, while controlling our own future, exercising our right to self-sufficiency, and most importantly, providing for our families. We can promote these values by ensuring Idahoans access to our abundant clean energy resources - geothermal, hydropower, wind and solar.
The Idaho Clean Energy Association promotes businesses that provide clean energy services and products that help Idahoans control our energy future and grow our economy. We believe an important part of growing Idaho's economy is to invest Idaho's energy dollars right here in Idaho.
To protect individual rights and grow Idaho's economy, we object to Idaho Power's net metering proposal that increases fees on small energy projects by over 400 percent and eliminates payments for electricity that individuals produce for others. This proposal has put several small Idaho businesses on the brink of going out of business and will render the existing projects owned by over 350 Idahoans uneconomical. The Idaho Clean Energy Association is seeking a better solution - a fair deal for Idahoans who exercise their right to self-sufficiency that helps grow Idaho's economy.
LEIF ELGETHUN, Idaho Clean Energy Association president, Boise
Otter backs away from Medicaid
Republican states that refuse to implement Medicaid expansion to make some political point not only hurt their least fortunate constituents, but affect every taxpayer and every American who has health insurance.
Gov. Butch Otter made a big show of appointing a 14-member committee to study the pros and cons of expanding Medicaid, then proceeded to ignore their unanimous recommendation to do so. Unfortunately, he never intended to give a crap about the study or the 100,000 uninsured Idahoans who could be eligible because he just announced that Idaho will refuse the federal offer.
He doesn't care if Idaho loses $3.7 billion from the federal government over 10 years, or that businesses employing more than 50 workers and not paying a livable wage will have to insure these otherwise eligible employees, or that the rest of the working poor will fall through the cracks again.
Hospitals should be pressuring our state politicians because expansion covers those most likely to use emergency services that cost hospitals tens of billions in unpaid hospital bills. Medical providers pass their indigent costs along to the rest of us.
These are your compassionate Boise politicians busy at work helping the citizens of Idaho.
SHERRIE GOFF, Pocatello