On Nov. 22, 2011, the CPUC issued a Proposed Decision regarding PG&E's Smart Meter opt-out proposal.
The earliest the Proposed Decision can come before the CPUC’s Commissioners for a vote is January 12, 2012.
The Proposed Decision modifies PG&E’s Smart Meter program to include an option for residential customers who do not wish to have a wireless Smart Meter installed at their location.
The opt-out option would allow the consumer to have a non-communicating electric and/or gas meter. The electric meter must be capable, by no later than January 1, 2014, of collecting interval energy consumption data and allow PG&E to collect this data manually and use for billing purposes.
Consumers electing the opt-out option would be assessed an initial fee of $90 and a monthly charge of $15 thereafter.
Customers enrolled in the CPUC’s low income program (California Alternate Rates for Energy (CARE)) electing the opt-out option would not be assessed an initial fee but would be assessed a monthly charge of $5.
PG&E’s proposed fees, which were not adopted in the Proposed Decision, called for customers to be charged an initial fee of approximately $270 and a monthly charge of $14. Additionally, PG&E proposed an exit fee of $130, which would be charged to all opt-out customers who decide to have a wireless Smart Meter at a later date or terminate service at their location. This proposal was also rejected by the Proposed Decision.
If the Proposed Decision is approved by the CPUC’s Commissioners, the September 21, 2011, Assigned Commissioner’s Ruling directing PG&E to establish a delay list would no longer be in effect and all customers on the delay list would be transitioned to a wireless Smart Meter unless they elected to participate in the opt-out option.
Comments from parties on the Proposed Decision are due by December 12, 2011.
Consumers can comment on the Proposed Decision by writing, emailing, or calling the CPUC’s Public Advisor’s Office.