Prosper is an Arizona-based free market advocacy group funded by utility special interests and connected to the Koch political network and is led by former Arizona House Speaker Kirk Adams (who is also the president of Americans for Responsible Leadership, another group connected to American Encore and the Koch Brothers’ network).
In 2013, Prosper, along with 60 Plus Association, received funding from Arizona Public Service (APS) to back the utility’s anti-solar effort to add fees for homeowners that install distributed solar. Prosper released an ad claiming that charging ratepayers who install solar is about fairness; a claim used by utility companies to increase electric rates. Sean Noble from American Encore also served as a consultant with Prosper to help APS change Arizona’s solar regulations to make installing solar uneconomical for families.
This year, Prosper sent a press release urging a utility in Arizona, Salt River Project (SRP), to increase fees on net metering customers. SRP’s Board of Directors eventually passed a $50 per month fee on customers who install solar panels, essentially gutting the solar market in the utility’s territory. In fact, solar installations in the SRP territory dropped dramatically after the fees were approved: only 61 SRP customers applied to install solar between December 8, 2014 and April 30, 2015, according to reporting from The Arizona Republic. In 2014, several hundred people were applying to install solar each month.