By B.N. Frank
New Jersey consumer and environmental organizations are the latest to oppose customer rate increases which include funding the installation of unsafe, inefficient and costly utility “Smart” Meters:
AARP New Jersey dropped off about 23,000 postcards from its members on Wednesday with a message to the state Board of Public Utilities and Gov. Phil Murphy.
We can’t afford utility bill increases, amounting to $12 billion in proposals by AARP’s count as of December, an organizer said. “Not a penny more.”
AARP was joined by Clean Water Action, Environment New Jersey, the New Jersey chapter of the Sierra Club, the New Jersey Main Street Alliance and the Anti-Poverty Network of New Jersey.
Many states have been legislatively fighting the forced installation of these problematic meters. They do not benefit customers and they aren’t eco-friendly. In some cases it’s been documented that they use more energy to run than original analog meters. Increased energy costs are then passed on to customers.
Utility companies knew these meters were problematic years ago. They took federal stimulus money and raised customer rates to install them anyway. Despite all the issues and complaints (including fires and explosions), utility companies continue promoting them this way because “Smart” Meters are more profitable than original analog meters.
Utility “Smart” Meters are problematic everywhere. A documentary was produced about them in 2013 – Take Back Your Power. It was updated in 2017 and is free to watch online. Filmmaker, Josh del Sol, recently released more updates on a 2015 video about these meters as well.
Public Utility Commissions (PUC) are supposed to protect the public by regulating utility companies. If yours are still promoting utility “Smart” Meters – and raising your rates for their installation or replacement – consider yourself NOT protected.
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