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After denying involvement for months, Arizona Public Service (APS) has recently admitted to funding non-profit organizations created to stop rooftop solar.  As reported last Monday in The Arizona Republic, the company “sent cash to two non-profit groups that support the utility’s goal to make solar customers pay higher bills.”

The utility has been lying publicly about funding the anti-rooftop solar organizations because it wanted to give the impression that these organizations were developed and operating through grassroots-level efforts. APS lied to shareholders, ratepayers, and the general public to maintain this illusion.

One of these organizations, 60 Plus, works with consultant Sean Noble, who was also a political consultant for the Koch brothers in their fight against the democratic party and the 2012 Obama campaign.  APS has admitted to contracting Noble.  Noble has been under investigation for campaign money laundering in CA.

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After denying involvement for months, Arizona Public Service (APS) has recently admitted to funding non-profit organizations created to stop rooftop solar.  As reported last Monday in The Arizona Republic, the company “sent cash to two non-profit groups that support the utility’s goal to make solar customers pay higher bills.”

The utility has been lying publicly about funding the anti-rooftop solar organizations because it wanted to give the impression that these organizations were developed and operating through grassroots-level efforts. APS lied to shareholders, ratepayers, and the general public to maintain this illusion.

One of these organizations, 60 Plus, works with consultant Sean Noble, who was also a political consultant for the Koch brothers in their fight against the democratic party and the 2012 Obama campaign.  APS has admitted to contracting Noble.  Noble has been under investigation for campaign money laundering in CA.

Just prior to this news, The Arizona Republic published a piece about a plan that was pitched to APS four years ago by Arizona’s top lobbying firm that proposed the launching of a $4.3 million campaign aimed at manufacturing controversies and making non-profits appear as grassroots efforts.  The purpose of this plan was to overhaul the Arizona Corporation Commission and influence voters’ decisions when reelecting regulators.

Even though APS claims to have dismissed the plan, one of the two people that pitched the plan was hired by the utility as their top lobbyist, and the tactics described in the report, titled “The Institute for Energy Policy” are strikingly similar to those currently being used to stop the rooftop solar industry. The plan’s co-author also does work for APS.

Apparently, APS is not the only utility involving itself in deceptive practices aimed at killing the rooftop solar industry.  At the national level, the utility trade organization Edison Electric Institute (EEI) secretly provided leads to local media on stories that support APS’s cause and attack a local rooftop solar company.  EEI’s involvement and its report Disruptive Challenges is evidence that utilities across the country are using similar tactics to protect their monopolies and eliminate rooftop solar.

APS has lied continuously; which other utilities are doing the same?

Extended (Optional)

Originally posted to BaileyA on Fri Oct 25, 2013 at 05:13 PM PDT.

Also republished by Phoenix Kossacks and Climate Change SOS.

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