A former Qld Liberal leader has taken to Twitter to condemn the state’s treasurer for calling solar bonus scheme beneficiaries “champagne sippers”.

A former Queensland Liberal leader has slammed the state treasurer for likening a solar bonus scheme to middle-class welfare.

Brisbane talkback radio went into a frenzy on Friday after Treasurer Tim Nicholls told parliament the former Labor government’s feed-in tariff scheme was designed for “champagne sippers and the latte set”.

Bruce Flegg, a former state Liberal leader who Mr Nicholls challenged in 2007, took to Twitter to condemn those comments.

“People who installed solar panels were also urged and incentivised to do so by the then govt and should not be criticised for having done so,” he tweeted on Friday.

Earlier, Premier Campbell Newman declared in parliament he never received a 44-cent feed-in tariff after installing solar panels on his home in 2007.

“Guess what I get paid: it’s eight cents or less. I’ve never got the 44-cent feed-in tariff,” he said.

“Not at all. Not one little bit of it, ever.”

More than 200,000 Queensland households receive 44 cents for every kilowatt hour they feed into the grid.

The Liberal National Party reduced the tariff to eight cents, for new customers only, after it won power, and recently changed it again so customers negotiate the fee directly with energy retailers.