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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Legislature To Hear Net-Metering Bill Tuesday

Legislature To Hear Net-Metering Bill Tuesday
Freddy Monares - Legislative News Service
Legislature To Hear Net-Metering Bill Tuesday

A legislative committee is considering a bill that would require Montanans who produce their own energy to include advanced technologies that help utility companies manage that electricity.

NorthWestern Energy says Senate Bill 1 is moving in the right direction, but:

"NorthWestern does not have the communications systems in place that could actually communicate with a smart meter like that," said John Alke, a member of NorthWestern Energy’s corporate counsel.

Alke says the company supports the bill conceptually, but would have to use a provision included in the bill to give the company time to cooperate with said technologies.

Republican Senator Pat Connell of Hamilton is the sponsor of the bill:

"It’s in the best interest of all generators to recognize that there's got to be central control of the distribution of electricity," Connell said.

The Energy and Telecommunications Committee will hear the bill Tuesday.

Freddy Monares is a reporter with the UM Legislative News Service, a partnership of the University of Montana School of Journalism, the Montana Broadcasters Association and the Greater Montana Foundation.

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