Missouri Senate rejects revival of solar rebates

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- The Missouri Senate has defeated an attempt to revive a program that provides rebates for solar energy panels.

The Senate voted 18-11 against an amendment Tuesday that would have required utility regulators to make the rebates available on a first-come, first-serve basis until it determines the costs have caused utilities to increase rates by 1 percent.

The measure lost on a bipartisan vote, with some Democrats and Republicans on each side of the issue.

A ballot measure approved in 2008 requires investor-owned utilities to derive 5 percent of their electric generation from renewable resources this year. But it also caps the associated rate increases at 1 percent.

The Public Service Commission approved an agreement last year capping the amount utilities had to pay in solar rebates.

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