A South Dakota legislative committee on Friday killed a bill that would have required regulated utilities in the state to use a standard set of criteria in establishing an avoided-cost rate.

The avoided-cost rate is particularly significant in South Dakota because utilities there for the most part do not offer net metering. That means that the small number of self-generating customers in South Dakota are paid the much lower avoided-cost rate for any excess production that they put onto the grid.

The bill would have closed the gaps among the rates now paid by various utilities across the state for distributed power.

The committee rejected the bill by a vote of 11 to two.

Karen spent most of her career reporting for the Kansas City Star, focusing at various times on local and regional news, and features. More recently, she was employed as a researcher and writer for a bioethics center at a children’s hospital in Kansas City. Karen covers Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota.