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PG&E customer refuses to take smart meter, locks up old meter
San Francisco Chronicle / sfgate.com ^ | March 12 2010 at 11:13 AM | Posted By: Aileen Yoo

Posted on 03/12/2010 8:04:49 PM PST by thecodont

When Pacific Gas and Electric Co. announced it was installing smart meters, they weren't exactly giving customers the option of turning down the device. But one Bay Area man demanding his constitutional rights told CBS5 that he doesn't want a new meter. Period.

"To me it's unconstitutional, it's an invasion of my privacy," said Mark Dieteman.

The smart meter allows PG&E to watch energy usage remotely and lets customers monitor how much electricity they use. However, residents have blamed the devices for a dramatic increase in their bills, prompting calls for an investigation. A Bakersfield man also filed a class-action lawsuit, which claims customers were overcharged and should get a refund.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/scavenger/detail?entry_id=59017#ixzz0i1gBR6wC

(Excerpt) Read more at sfgate.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events; US: California
KEYWORDS: bigbrother; energy; smartmeter; utilities

1 posted on 03/12/2010 8:04:49 PM PST by thecodont
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To: thecodont

The day is swiftly arriving when one will have to produce most of one’s own electricity off the grid.


2 posted on 03/12/2010 8:07:00 PM PST by Paladin2
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To: thecodont

Meters that make time-of-usage information available in insecure ways could be a boon to thieves.


3 posted on 03/12/2010 8:07:38 PM PST by Clint Williams (America -- a great idea, didn't last.)
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To: thecodont
However, residents have blamed the devices for a dramatic increase in their bills, prompting calls for an investigation.

Funny indeed. We've been told these things are supposed to save us money. I guess it is like asking a barber about needing a haircut.

4 posted on 03/12/2010 8:07:43 PM PST by pnh102 (Regarding liberalism, always attribute to malice what you think can be explained by stupidity. - Me)
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To: thecodont

Wonder how much $ this is going to end up costing him.


5 posted on 03/12/2010 8:09:15 PM PST by bigbob
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To: pnh102

They do. I’m on a time of usage meter and we save about $250 a year.


6 posted on 03/12/2010 8:10:37 PM PST by conservativepoet (The chief aim of order within Christianity is to make room for good things to romp and play.)
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To: thecodont

And apparently in Texas and California they have been charging double with the new meters.


7 posted on 03/12/2010 8:15:00 PM PST by GeronL (I Own Me (yep, boiled down to 6 letters))
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To: conservativepoet

Our bills doubled without a use increase.


8 posted on 03/12/2010 8:15:50 PM PST by GeronL (I Own Me (yep, boiled down to 6 letters))
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To: thecodont

They just installed our smart meters,for gas and elec.
We still have a meter reader because the system is not fully operational.
They say it will be 2 or 3 yrs before it is Auto..
Yes they will tell us how to use our gas and elec.
It is all for the Enviro bullshit.........


9 posted on 03/12/2010 8:17:04 PM PST by GSP.FAN (These are the times that try men's souls.)
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To: thecodont

Fight the POWER !!

sorry, couldn’t resist.


10 posted on 03/12/2010 8:18:18 PM PST by onona (dbada)
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To: thecodont
He should have just switched to the competitor’s brand of electricity. Oops, that's right, there is no competition.
11 posted on 03/12/2010 8:22:27 PM PST by SpaceBar
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To: onona
Don't worry, I got an old Popular Science magazine here that says when nuclear comes online the electricity will be so cheap they won't even meter it, won't that be great.

Wow, here's another article about flying cars!

12 posted on 03/12/2010 8:22:29 PM PST by norraad ("What light!">Blues Brothers)
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To: GSP.FAN

Mine was involuntarily installed three days ago. Big Brother is watching. Not that he will have much to go on: we are very niggardly in our energy usage, especially in heating and air conditioning.


13 posted on 03/12/2010 8:25:14 PM PST by caseinpoint (Don't get thickly involved in thin things)
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To: caseinpoint

Watch for an increase of clandestine indoor pot farms busted with smart meters.


14 posted on 03/12/2010 8:27:29 PM PST by SpaceBar
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To: caseinpoint

Careful about using that word “niggardly”!

Jackson and Sharpton will organize a protest at your front door, until someone looks it up in the dictionary. But by that time, it’ll be too late. You’ll be on the hook for reparations...


15 posted on 03/12/2010 8:29:49 PM PST by Tigerized (Proud Dad of a US Marine)
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To: Tigerized

“Niggardly” was was good enough for my Scandanavian forebears so it is quite good enough for me. Besides, I don’t like having our multicultural language censored by hypersensitive, offensive offenders like Jackson and Sharpton. That and they can’t find me anyway. ;o)


16 posted on 03/12/2010 8:36:31 PM PST by caseinpoint (Don't get thickly involved in thin things)
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To: SpaceBar

That might be interesting. Several homes in our neck of the woods (San Joaquin Valley just east of Oakland/SFO) were confiscated by cops after a gang from SFO was caught using them as grow stations for marijuana. I guess maybe they can detect unusually high usage and possibly get a search warrant.


17 posted on 03/12/2010 8:50:10 PM PST by caseinpoint (Don't get thickly involved in thin things)
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To: caseinpoint

really? it’s pretty much legal to grow for medicinal purposes.

wonder what the rest of the story is?


18 posted on 03/12/2010 8:55:18 PM PST by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously... You'll never live through it.)
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To: thecodont

My best meter story is when I was living on the beach and my meter stopped working, it was free electricity for two years.


19 posted on 03/12/2010 9:02:46 PM PST by ansel12 (Social liberal politicians in the GOP are easy for the left to turn, why is that?)
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To: thecodont
the right to unreasonable search and seizure only applies to government vs citizens. PGE is a private bussiness(supposedly)

this is why they have the right to take his meter and along the same lines why an employer can invade and search you (even demand a drug test without a warrant or showing any cause for suspicion), but the state government can't drug test its employess or search them without showing cause

20 posted on 03/12/2010 9:04:09 PM PST by KTM rider ( ..........tell me this really isn't happening ! !)
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To: ansel12

That happen to me too. However, it did not completely stop. It just started moving at a snails pace. My bill went down 90%.


21 posted on 03/12/2010 9:11:26 PM PST by kara37
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To: thecodont

22 posted on 03/12/2010 9:14:24 PM PST by PERKY2004 (Proud military wife of a pilot ~ Praying for him and for all our troops!)
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To: norraad

You are so right.


23 posted on 03/12/2010 9:47:45 PM PST by freekitty (Give me back my conservative vote; then find me a real conservative to vote for)
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To: GeronL

Did you use your heavy appliances during the cheaper hours?


24 posted on 03/12/2010 9:52:09 PM PST by conservativepoet (The chief aim of order within Christianity is to make room for good things to romp and play.)
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To: SpaceBar
"He should have just switched to the competitor’s brand of electricity. Oops, that's right, there is no competition."

You must not be in TEXAS!

25 posted on 03/12/2010 9:59:21 PM PST by matthew fuller (obama- no watermelon salesman, but gun and ammo salesman of the century.)
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To: ansel12

I’ve heard that one can encourage that with strong magnets. They sell very strong magnets at Harbor Freighht Tools.


26 posted on 03/12/2010 10:04:22 PM PST by matthew fuller (obama- no watermelon salesman, but gun and ammo salesman of the century.)
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To: conservativepoet

They never told us anything about “cheaper hours”. They installed a new digital meter a few months ago is all we know.


27 posted on 03/12/2010 10:19:37 PM PST by GeronL (I Own Me (yep, boiled down to 6 letters))
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To: ansel12

lol. You were in no hurry to report it I guess.


28 posted on 03/12/2010 10:21:12 PM PST by GeronL (I Own Me (yep, boiled down to 6 letters))
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To: GeronL

LOL


29 posted on 03/12/2010 10:26:08 PM PST by happinesswithoutpeace (There is a crack in everything, that's how the light gets in.)
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To: GeronL

Years ago, our meter seemed to be on the fritz and we were getting very low readings. After a few months, my wife reported it, just because she was afraid that we would get some kind of retroactive estimate dumped on us. They didn’t do anything, and I believe she reported the apparent problem again one or more times. I think it was a year or more before they came out and fixed it. I think they finally discovered it for themselves ... not sure. They didn’t seem concerned about making any billing adjustments. Maybe such a thing is legally impossible, dunno.


30 posted on 03/12/2010 10:48:04 PM PST by dr_lew
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To: thecodont

Funny thing about electric meters...

Check out the one on your house or apartment. Watch how fast it spins. Now turn on a heavy draw appliance like your oven and observe how quickly the dial spins up.

Now turn off the appliance and notice that the dial spins down, but at an appreciably slower rate of decline than its previous rate of acceleration.

Funny, huh?

I didn’t think so either...


31 posted on 03/12/2010 10:57:47 PM PST by rockrr (Everything is different now...)
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To: dr_lew

Maybe they just figured it cost more to get it than it was worth


32 posted on 03/12/2010 11:03:15 PM PST by GeronL (I Own Me (yep, boiled down to 6 letters))
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To: GeronL
Maybe they just figured it cost more to get it than it was worth

Yes, but apparently as a matter of standing policy. I feel sure that the costs have their basis in consumer protection in one way or another. Not that I'm complaining! What would give them the right to bill for unmetered usage ?

33 posted on 03/12/2010 11:09:36 PM PST by dr_lew
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To: GeronL

Hmmm...maybe the smart meter and time of usage meter are two different things. We have a set time when power is cheaper and we use our heavier appliances around those times.


34 posted on 03/12/2010 11:19:39 PM PST by conservativepoet (The chief aim of order within Christianity is to make room for good things to romp and play.)
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To: caseinpoint

That would be a really interesting court case, but you don’t need smart meters to notice a house using 10 times the power of a regular home.


35 posted on 03/12/2010 11:28:02 PM PST by USNBandit (sarcasm engaged at all times)
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To: GeronL

Then there had to have been a rate increase. It’s absurd to think the power co is “making up” usage numbers because this is impossible to conceal.


36 posted on 03/13/2010 2:22:49 AM PST by 101voodoo
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To: USNBandit

you don’t need smart meters to notice a house using 10 times the power of a regular home.

HHHMMMM ALGORES growing an indoor crop.


37 posted on 03/13/2010 3:35:30 AM PST by W. W. SMITH
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To: ansel12

My parents farm had a meter in the middle of all the out buildings. That metered all electrical use for everything. It got hit by lightning and stopped working. My Dad called the electric company twice but they did nothing so he quit calling. They got a CREDIT every month of $25.00 because they didn’t use any electricity!

This went on for 3 years until we re-wired the house and installed a new 200 amp service. We had a new meter installed on the house and stopped using the other meter. Once the power company saw the actual usage they wanted a refund of three years worth of credits.

Of course my Dad told them where to go and after a while they stopped asking.

Similarly my business was in a rented office building where we were for 5 years (we moved to bigger digs). For the whole 5 years the power company was reading the wrong meter and we were billed for the neighboring office and they got our bills. We always wondered why they had most of their lights off all the time and kept the A/C at 80 degrees! So after we moved the power company figured it out and tried to bill us for a couple thousand bucks - what a joke!


38 posted on 03/13/2010 4:55:50 AM PST by msrngtp2002 (Just my opinion.)
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To: thecodont

In our part of Northern Arkansas, redneck country, our Coop installed digital meters two or three years ago. I did not experience any great or noticeable increase in usage. I do keep monthly records. Nobody comes by to read the meter as is is done by radio interrogation.

This week my water company came by and installed new digital water meters that can be read by a truck driving down the street. California has got to get modern like our part of Arkansas


39 posted on 03/13/2010 4:56:31 AM PST by supermop (Somebody has to clean up the mess he will leave)
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To: conservativepoet
Right. Your bill should tell you the peak hours to avoid heavy usage.
Especially dryers and AC. I have a load meter that will only allow
enough power to run lights and the oven, then times the AC to about 28-min per hour
during peak hours. It's called a power sentry. Also unplug everything accept clocks
because they consist of 10-30% of your bill. I use a power strips to click off
the kitchen gadgets when they're not in use.

/Salute

40 posted on 03/13/2010 5:08:27 AM PST by MaxMax (Conservatism isn't a party)
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To: norraad
"Don't worry, I got an old Popular Science magazine here that says when nuclear comes online the electricity will be so cheap they won't even meter it, won't that be great. Wow, here's another article about flying cars!"

Funny thing is we have the capabilities to do both and have had such capabilities for nearly 30 years.

Can anyone guess WHY we have neither now? (As well as commercial space flight etc.)

41 posted on 03/13/2010 5:12:28 AM PST by Mad Dawgg (If you're going to deny my 1st Amendment rights then I must proceed to the next one...)
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To: SpaceBar
Watch for an increase of clandestine indoor pot farms busted with smart meters.

In British Columbia where it seems that indoor pot farms are a dime a dozen on every street, I believe that bypassing the meter is the MO for these operators.

42 posted on 03/13/2010 5:29:11 AM PST by Asfarastheeastisfromthewest... (“The urge to save humanity is almost always a false-face for the urge to rule it.”....Mencken)
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To: Vendome

Twarn’t medicinal, I guess. The homes had all been purchased by a SFO person with Asian gang ties and were dedicated to growing hundreds of plants in each house.


43 posted on 03/13/2010 5:30:00 AM PST by caseinpoint (Don't get thickly involved in thin things)
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To: USNBandit

You don’t need a search warrant to see excessive use of energy as required by these homes but understand California society now is to shut up, lock up and mind your own business. Most people in the Bay Area can’t even name or recognize their neighbors. Those wandering around at night (and of a mind to notice what their neighbors are doing) are usually just running on errands or getting home from a brutal Bay Area commute. They just want to retire to their entertainment room and watch the flickering lights of the idiot box, not their neighor’s bedrooms.


44 posted on 03/13/2010 5:33:12 AM PST by caseinpoint (Don't get thickly involved in thin things)
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To: thecodont

“”To me it’s unconstitutional, it’s an invasion of my privacy,” said Mark Dieteman.”

P.G.&E. isn’t the government. Plus, the meter and the electricity that it measures belongs to them — P.G.&E. He entered into a contractual arrangement with P.G.&.E. to purchase the electrical power that they sell. So, there’s nothing constitutional or unconstitutional about this arrangement. If he doesn’t like what they have to sell, well, since there’s no competitor he can’t purchase power from anyone else, but he still has the choice to disconnect! Then, he can have all the privacy he wants in the comfort of a dark, unheated house!


45 posted on 03/13/2010 8:51:31 AM PST by Jay W
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To: Jay W
“”To me it’s unconstitutional, it’s an invasion of my privacy,” said Mark Dieteman.”

P.G.&E. isn’t the government. Plus, the meter and the electricity that it measures belongs to them — P.G.&E. He entered into a contractual arrangement with P.G.&.E. to purchase the electrical power that they sell. So, there’s nothing constitutional or unconstitutional about this arrangement. If he doesn’t like what they have to sell, well, since there’s no competitor he can’t purchase power from anyone else, but he still has the choice to disconnect! Then, he can have all the privacy he wants in the comfort of a dark, unheated house!

Yours is a good point. This story illustrates that many people don't have a firm grasp of what is and is not Constitutional (on the federal or state level) and what their individual rights and responsibilities are.

46 posted on 03/13/2010 10:11:29 AM PST by thecodont
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To: MaxMax

...I have a load meter that will only allow enough power to run lights and the oven, then times the AC to about 28-min per hour ...

If this is how you chose to reduce your expences, good for you, But I find it interesting that the reason to do this nation wide is based on a false presuposition - ie al gore - and is encouraged if not forced on us through prohibitive goverment regulations that fail the American people by inhibiting the electric co ability to build more power plants.


47 posted on 03/13/2010 10:35:15 AM PST by lowflyn (Time to go again)
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To: Jay W

Quite correct. He can’t choose to keep “his” old meter because it isn’t his meter.


48 posted on 03/13/2010 10:40:23 AM PST by Sherman Logan ( .)
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To: lowflyn
I completely agree. The Gov has no business regulating how much energy we choose
to use in the USA, period. It's unAmerican and it stifles commerce and the economy
by making people feeeeeel guilty. I'm just not as rich as Limbaugh yet so I need
to watch the budget.


Damn you Limbaugh!

49 posted on 03/13/2010 11:54:38 AM PST by MaxMax (Conservatism isn't a party)
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To: MaxMax

Cool...thanks for the info.


50 posted on 03/13/2010 2:26:52 PM PST by conservativepoet (The chief aim of order within Christianity is to make room for good things to romp and play.)
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