When smart meters first appeared there were many rumors about how they were going to save the end users money as the utility company could more accurately read the meter. They mentioned how some bills had to be calculated on an extrapolated guess as the meter was in a location where it could not be read when the meter person was there. They also touted the new meter as a way for the user to set up a plan to use high energy consuming appliances during times when the rate was lower.
As people are becoming more knowledgeable about how the meters work, they discovered that the meters are actually overcharging. The meter not only tallies the amount of electricity used by the customer but it includes the amount of electricity required by the meter to transmit data and monitor smart appliances. The meters communicate with a surveillance computer, this computer needs to be replaced about every 5 to 6 years. The cost of this computer is apportioned to the customer’s utility bill. The analog meters which were replaced only measured that actual electricity used by the customer.
Initially when the meters were being replaced, some customers objected and tried to prevent the utility workers from coming onto their property. The utility workers called the police and the homeowners were coerced into having the meters replaced. Other homeowners whose meter were replaced without their knowledge called the utility company to try to get their old meter back. They were told that they would have to pay for the reinstallation and they would incur a monthly charge because the utility would have to pay for a meter reader to come to their house for their bill to be processed.
On July 19, a civil action suit was filed against the Central Maine Power Company (CMP) citing the increase in the customer’s bills due to the allocation of the cost for the surveillance computer. CMP provides service to 624,000 customer and 97,000 customer’s bills have risen by 50% or more. 200,000 other customers have been overcharged up to 50%. The suit is looking for CMP to reimburse the monies overcharged.
There are many other issues known about the health hazards of these meters. It is highly suggested that people research the implications these meters have on privacy issues as well as the biological effects the constant radiation emitted from them have on your well being.