Friday, December 23, 2011

Trickle up poverty just as Obama promised.

Solar moon$hine

Albany pols may be about to play Scrooge with New Yorkers’ electric bills: They’re lining up with greenie activists and opportunistic labor unions to hike them by five bucks a month — or more.

State legislation would force utilities like Con Edison to distribute an increasing share of juice from solar-power suppliers.

Sponsors call it a “jobs bill” — butwallet-shredderwould be more apt: Con Ed would have to spend as much as10 timesmarket rates to buy the boutique power.

Make no mistake: This is a $325 million-a-year tax on utilities, which will pass it along to ratepayers — in the form of a $5 hike in monthly bills.

The Business Council of New York figures it will cost more than$40 billionover 30 years. That’s a back-breaking levy on utilities — or, rather, average New Yorkers.

Of course, it wouldn’t be the first time state lawmakers drove up electric bills: Back in 2009, they imposed a500 percenthike in one utilities tax to fuel their own spending addiction — a levy directly responsible for last year’s 10 percent jump in rates.

That bill was crafted to “induce consumers to lessen their use of energy, while . . . raising hundreds of millions of dollars of new revenue,” the legislation said.

The solar scam is part of a grab-bag of special-interest freebies. It gets ratepayers coming and going.

Not only does it force Con Ed and other utilities to buy more power from solar farms, but it also requires generators to pay contractors a “prevailing wage” when they install new solar equipment — inflating costs and shoveling money directly into union coffers.

What’s behind the push?

Environmental Luddites eager to curtail energy usage.

Solar-industry types who know they can’t survive without government mandates.

Unions looking to sop up some cash in the bargain.

And, of course, lawmakers hoping to buy friends from all three groups.

Here’s hoping Gov. Cuomo puts the kibosh on this solar rip-off —pronto.

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