Smart Meter Opt-out at Risk: CEP Files Protest

Smart Meter Opt-out at Risk:
CEP Files Protest

(March 10, 2015)

UTILITIES FILE ADVICE LETTERS THAT COUNTER THE DECISION

Following a late December CPUC “Smart Meter Opt-out” Decision intended to save utility customer costs by capping fees at three years and reading analog opt-out utility meters every two months, instead of monthly, SDG&E and other large California utilities recently filed proposals in so-called “Advice Letters” that could undermine the plan. SDG&E delayed following the CPUC opt-out Decision (D.14-12-078) in the past two months, claiming it needed to file its Advice Letter first, despite the Decision not specifically requiring it, rather, instructing utilities to implement the plan immediately. Following CEP’s formal CPUC complaint last week that SDG&E had delayed implementation of the Decision, SDG&E filed its Advice Letter more than two months after the Decision was approved by the CPUC.

CEP FILES PROTEST TO ADVICE LETTERS

Yesterday, in response, La Mesa-based 501c3 nonprofit, Center for Electrosmog Prevention (CEP), filed its Protest to SDG&E’s Advice Letter, pointing out that it was contrary to the CPUC’s adopted plan, which CEP says became effective on January 20, 2015.

Read CEP Protest Letter

Read SDG&E Advice Letter

Read CPUC Phase Two Opt-out Decision

SDG&E used wording that implied the smart meter opt-out and the choice of an analog meter were optional, and contained language with potential punitive consequences for opt-out customers. CEP’s Protest includes firm requests that the language be revised to support customers receiving opt-outs, including recognizing customer rights under the Decision, which include the availability of an analog meter and bimonthly readings. CEP strongly suggested estimated readings during the interim months should always be based on the average daily use for the previous month. In addition, CEP requests SDG&E and other utilities continually inform their customers concerning the availability of the opt-out in a positive manner, explaining how solar customers may also receive analog meters. CEP has had numerous complaints from customers with opt-out meters in fenced yards with access issues and requests that SDG&E work these situations out as they did prior to smart meters, in a non-punitive manner, such as setting up appointments for meter reading and allowing self-reads with occasional true-ups.

DECISION ALLOWS CUSTOMERS TO OPT-OUT FREE AFTER 3 YEARS

Many smart meter opt-out customers will begin receiving the opt-out free of fees soon after May 9, 2015, the date the opt-out was first allowed in California

REASONS TO OPT-OUT OF SMART METERS

Reasons for opting out of so-called “smart” utility meters include overcharging (smart meters known to produce higher bills, failing to be accurate), health (pulsed rf radiation emitted every second), safety (can be associated with house fires), privacy (data collected forms a household profile and can be shared with third parties and intrusively used by law enforcement without a warrant), and security (smart meters can be hacked into with multiple consequences).

TO LEARN MORE ABOUT OPT-OUTS FROM SDG&E’S SMART METERS CLICK HERE
Note: SDG&E has not informed customers about the end of the opt-out fees after three years of opting out on their website, and they present the opt-out in a negative fashion.

HOW TO OPT-OUT

Want to opt-out from SDG&E’s smart meters and receive a safe, healthy, accurate analog meter that does not intrude into your privacy? Fill out SDG&E’s form online to request opt-out by clicking here.

To view all documents filed in the Phase 2 Smart Meter Opt-out Proceeding at the CPUC click here and enter Proceeding Number A1103014 in the search box.

PROTEST

To write the CPUC and protest SDG&E’s Advice Letter follow these directions:
Anyone may protest this advice letter to the Commission. The protest must state the grounds upon which it is based, including such items as financial and service impacts, and should be
submitted expeditiously. The protest must be made in writing and received within 20 days of the date this advice letter was filed with the CPUC, or March 26, 2015. There is no restriction on who may file a protest.

The address for mailing or delivering a protest to the Commission is:
CPUC Energy Division
Attention: Tariff Unit
505 Van Ness Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94102

Copies of the protest should also be sent via e-mail to the attention of the Energy Division at EDTariffUnit@cpuc.ca.gov.

A copy of the protest should also be sent via e-mail to the addresses shown below on the same date it is mailed or delivered to the Commission.

Attn: Megan Caulson
Regulatory Tariff Manager
9305 Lightwave Avenue, SD1190
San Diego, CA 92123
E-mail: mcaulson@semprautilities.com” (SDG&E Advice Letter, p. 3)

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Susan Brinchman
Director, Center for Electrosmog Prevention, a CA nonprofit
Center for Electrosmog Prevention
P.O. Box 655
La Mesa, CA
91944
www.electrosmogprevention.org
Smart Meter Dangers www.smartmeterdangers.org
SCASM Southern Californians Against Smart Meters www.causes.com/causes/610453-southern-californians-against-smart-meters-scasm
American Coalition Against Smart Meters (ACASM) www.causes.com/acasm
Follow Smart Meter News and CEP on Twitter twitter.com/No2SmartMeters
Subscribe to CEP newsletter http://eepurl.com/rNTOH

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