is that they pose significant health hazards.
Is it within the rights of the utility company to intentionally place health hazards to you and your family on your property?
Which is more likely to cause you harm, a device which poses a constant hazard to your health, or the occasional meter reader you've already had visiting your home every month since you were connected?
Sure, there are incidents of "bad guys" working as meter readers. What is the rate of incidence of this versus a constant health hazard?
Many if not all of these devices are not UL listed. I've yet to find an insurance company that will pay a fire claim that may have resulted from a device attached to your home that was not UL listed. These meters have been documented to catch fire. Thus you can add to the hazards otherwise known, the hazard of fire, which may not only be life threatening depending on the circumstances, but will certainly damage property, and your insurance company may very well not pay for it, leaving you to take the electric company to court. Good luck with that one.
Still don't see the problem now?
How about the math?
Previously, you were paying a certain amount for electricity. Built into this was a 'customer charge' even if you didn't use a single kilowatt. This charge, and the price billed to you for power, was enough for the company to pay meter readers and still make a profit.
Now, they've changed the meter to one that doesn't need a meter reader. Yet your bill doesn't go down to account for the "savings" of not needing a meter reader. In fact, if you want to keep your old meter, you now have to pay EXTRA for it to be read.
In many cases, your bill with the new meter is now significantly higher than it was before and they still can't manage to pay meter readers for those that want to keep the old meter.
The power consumption hasn't changed, what's changed is how they measure it. Thus maybe you really were using more than you were billed for. (doubtful because then the sum total of all meters wouldn't equal how much power they had to buy or generate - they'd have caught this many moons ago) But even not billing you for what you were using, they still made a profit and PAID meter readers.
Now, suddenly, though they are collecting more or even the same amount from you, they can't find the money to pay readers. And if they see you are using more power than originally thought, they don't lower rates. (remember - you were paying them enough in higher rates to make a profit to compensate for the "missing" power never billed for)
The math doesn't work.
Don't see a problem still?
Maybe you have a selective vision problem.
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