Mo. lawsuit accuses KCP&L of negligence

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) — A northwest Missouri man has filed a lawsuit accusing Kansas City Power & Light of negligence in its oversight of the solar-panel rebate program.

The lawsuit was filed in Buchanan County Circuit Court this month by St. Joseph resident Richard Sharp, listing KCP&L, St. Joseph-based U.S. Solar and its owner Trevor Dryden as defendants, The St. Joseph News-Press reported (http://bit.ly/1ayEV6M ). The lawsuit seeks damages for breach of contract, negligence and other alleged violations.

KCP&L spokesman Chuck Caisley said utility officials “vigorously deny” the allegations.

“This was a transaction between two private parties,” Caisley said. “This is a resident who chose U.S. Solar and is now unhappy with what happened between them and U.S. Solar. It has very little to do with KCP&L.”

A message left at a home listing under Dryden’s name was not immediately returned, and calls to U.S. Solar seeking comment were not answered Friday.

The utility has offered residential and commercial customers in Missouri a $2.00 per watt rebate for using solar technology for their homes and businesses, according to its website.

In the 62-page complaint that was filed Aug. 15, Sharp says he took part in KCP&L’s Solar Electric rebate program and chose U.S. Solar to install the systems. The complaint accuses U.S. Solar of installing inoperable systems that could not be connected to KCP&L’s electric system. Sharp also accuses KCP&L of breach of contract for failing to properly verify that the solar systems were operational.

KCP&L has 800,000 customers in northwestern Missouri and eastern Kansas.

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