Provo City for Technology Jobs and Growth
At the top of October 2016, I attended a Provo City Council meeting because I heard the city was planning on voting on a measure that would kill solar technology adoption in Provo. I do not work in the solar industry, but believe future jobs for me and my children are grounded in adoption of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Shunning technology because it can be difficult to understand economically or socially spoke to the core of who I am as an person. I was worried – I wanted Provo to be the permanent home for me and my family.
I was given two minutes to speak to the city council before I was dismissed from the podium so another concerned citizen could speak. During those two minutes, I delivered an alternative proposal that suggested one possible path that encouraged solar adoption while paying power grid costs. However, it was dismissed and the Provo City Council voted to enact a per month tariff of $3 per kilowatt that killed the economics of installing solar. It was an embarrassing moment for Provo City and for me and my family.
Fortunately, the Provo City Council voted a few weeks later to rescind the solar tariff for 90 days to hear alternative proposals. Moving forward, I don’t want to feel alone and dismissed in my efforts to make a difference. Some members of our city council have said:
- Solar is not viable
- Solar is not desired by Provo citizens
- Solar does not improve pollution in Provo
- Solar does not have benefits
- Solar owners are subsidized and do not contribute to the fixed costs
Our city council members believe solar owners do not pay their fair share of the fixed costs associated with the grid. Yet:
- Not a single study was done by the city council to evaluate the benefits of solar
- Not a single person was included in the discussion from the solar industry or Provo City residents who are solar owners
- Not a single study was done to see how much existing solar owners are still contributing to their fixed costs (i.e. still consuming electricity from the grid)
I don’t feel my fight is mine alone. Everyone in Provo City has the right to:
- Have businesses feel like Provo City is a destination that welcomes new technology and innovation
- Have STEM jobs that raise their children to the middle class or higher
- Have energy choice that is socially responsible and environmentally sustainable
I believe we need to consider the fixed costs of the power grid and ensure the future of our infrastructure (for solar residents and non-solar residents). But as Ray Kurzweil said, “technology has been the only thing that's enabled us to overcome problems.” It’s important we leverage solar technology and the power of the residential community to enable a solar policy that strengthens our power grid while remaining fiscally responsible.
After my experience presenting to the Provo City Council and being dismissed, I still wanted to help. So I thought I would start by initiating this online campaign to solicit the help of others. Please help me by:
- Joining this campaign to show you care about Provo being technology friendly and a home for STEM businesses
- Reaching out to our Provo City Council members expressing your support for pro-technology, pro-growth policies (http://www.provo.org/government/city-council/meet-the-council
- Sending me your proposals for how we can support solar in Provo and still pay into the power grid (in order to support its maintenance)
I promise to take your proposals and deliver them to the city council. You can email me your proposals and thoughts at any time: email@example.com. As support and interest grows in making Provo City technology friendly, the more we need to help the Provo City Council do the right thing.
Time is short - we have 90 days. Please sign today. Thank you!
Provo City for Technology Jobs and Growth
Marcus Daley started this petition with a single signature, and now has 186 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.
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