Opting Out of Smart Meter Will Cost Customers

Power companies across the state are installing "smart meters" because it saves them lots of money. 

As a customer, you don't have let them do it... but resistance will cost you extra. 

Henry Merryday at the Florida Public Service Commission calls it the "opt-out tariff."

"Customers will pay a one-time enrollment fee of 96 dollars and 34 cents, and a monthly surcharge of 15 dollars and 60 cents," he said. "These fees reflect Duke's incremental cost to offer the opt-out tariff."

Duke has almost 2 million customers in Florida and the company expects 27-hundred of them to "opt out." 

The power companies claim smart meters are perfectly safe, but opponents have plenty of reservations about them.

Many civil liberties advocates say the smart meters collect so much information that they're an invasion of your privacy.

Other critics note that the smart meters create their own wi-fi network, and they're concerned that the meters could be vulnerable to being hacked.

But the power companies say the smart meters mean they'll be able to get real-time information about the power grid.

Power companies also like the smart meters because there aren't any human meter readers that need to be paid.


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