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Sebastopol City Council OKs measure requesting delay in SmartMeter rollout

By BOB NORBERG
THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

The Sebastopol City Council approved an emergency measure Thursday night asking PG&E to delay installation of SmartMeters in the city until state regulators conclude hearings on new opt-out procedures.

“It was triggered by PG&E calling the city and saying they will start installing SmartMeters within two weeks,” said Vice Mayor Michael Kyes. “There are a number of people in the city who are not happy with that.”

SmartMeters have been particularly controversial in Sebastopol, where critics contend that the wireless meters emit radio frequencies that can cause health problems.

PG&E is promoting the meters as a way for consumers to better manage energy use, while allowing the utility to cut staff needed to read gas and electric meters.

When the utility introduced the meters in February 2010, however, it quickly ran into resistance in Sonoma County and elsewhere in California.

PG&E was required by the state Public Utilities Commission to allow individuals to keep their traditional meters, for a one-time fee of $75 and a $10 monthly fee to cover the cost of having the meters read.

The PUC now is holding hearings on how groups or communities could opt out of having the meters installed, as well as an analysis of the cost.

The council voted 5-0 to ask PG&E to not install meters within the city limits until those hearings are completed.

The vote was taken at 11:30 p.m., on the heels of the council’s second public hearing on another controversial project, the proposed CVS Pharmacy and Chase Bank branch at the vacant Pellini Chevrolet dealership.

You can reach Staff Writer Bob Norberg at 521-5206 or bob.norberg@pressdemocrat.com.





5 Responses to “Sebastopol City Council OKs measure requesting delay in SmartMeter rollout”

  1. Rod Serling says:

    Wait…..that stop sign up ahead. You are about to enter…..the Twilight Zone!

    Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6

  2. Mark Epstein says:

    Why is it that anything called SMART ends up making our local governments look stupid?

    Thumb up 17 Thumb down 1

  3. Jim Bennett says:

    Do your homework on Smart Meters before you make fun of others.

    After you have, you may want to button up as to not let your ignorance show.

    Thumb up 16 Thumb down 12

  4. David Wells says:

    What do you care what we want in Sebastopol? Stay wherever your narrow mind keeps you, that certainly shouldn’t be in our buisness.

    Thumb up 9 Thumb down 15

  5. Hank Synder says:

    Sebastopol is a crazied place. They have let a few nut jobs run away with this wireless smartmeter ban.

    Let Sebastopol run their little burg on sun light and moonshine. Let the city go off the grid. See how long it all lasts.

    The smart meters while monitoring your power usage will not destroy civilization or your civil rights. The government has many more tools at hand to do that.

    At least Sebastopol is always good for an eco laugh and comments about how rediculous socialism can really be.

    Keep on truckin’ Sebastopol you are better then the comic strips.

    Thumb up 20 Thumb down 13

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