“Smart” Meter Legislative Action

NEWS ALERT!

NEXT WEEK IS THE LAST WEEK FOR COMMITTEE MEETINGS!

We need to be calling these NY State Senators right now, as Committee meetings will be coming to a close next week. This will only take 15-20 minutes! These are members of the Consumer Protection Committee:

Senator Kevin Thomas, Chair (518) 455-3260 / (516) 739-1700  

Senator Brian Kavanagh (518) 455-2625/ (718) 875-1517

Senator Cordell Cleare (212) 222-7315 / (518) 455-2411  

Senator Elijah Reichlin-Melnick (518) 455-3260  

Senator James Tedisco (518) 885-1829  

Senator Mario R. Mattera (631) 361-2154  

Senator Zellnor Myrie (718) 284-4700 

Please call in your support for Senator Peter Harckham’s bill, S 8765, which we believe would achieve the most immediate and necessary goals in the campaign for safe utility meters. The time to show our support is NOW!

The message is “Please co-sponsor and vote for S8765 that provides for consumer protection and utility meter choice. Smart meters are bad for our health, bad for our privacy, bad for the environment, bad for business, and therefore, bad for New York! Only analog meters or a wired smart grid are acceptable. Analog meters have worked safely and reliably for 100 years. Furthermore, consumers have already paid for a wired smart grid built on fiber optic networks through billions in Verizon fees. No more delays. The telecoms and utilities must deliver.”

You can read the 1-page bill here:

https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation/bills/2021/S8765
Senate Bill S8765 – 2021-2022 Legislative Session – Relates to consumer protection and utility meter choice.

The bill includes provisions that

— allows for every consumer to deny the replacement of an analog meter without consent; with no penalty, fee or service charge;
— allows the request of the digital meter’s removal after installation to be replaced with an analog meter incurring no fee, penalty or service charge;
— the utility company must comply with a removal request within in 10 days if a consumer is afflicted with electromagnetic sensitivity or 30 days for any other reason.

If this could actually get passed, it would be a huge win against the utility giants. We can always continue to fight for further regulations on the energy and telecom grids. So first, we must go all out starting TODAY to call our state senators, and spread the word to get a coalition of people and groups to raise the volume.

It’s also advisable to send your senator the following summary which was composed by NYSUMA :

In addition to the committee members listed above, we must contact our own senators with the same message. You can find your senator and assembly member at these links.

https://www.nysenate.gov/find-my-senator
https://www.nyassembly.gov/mem/search/

Next Steps…

Right now it is sitting in the Consumer Protection Committee in the Senate, and we are anticipating a companion bill to be introduced any day in the Assembly into the Consumer Affairs and Protection Committee.

If you have a representative on any of these Consumer Protection committees we are making a special appeal to you to make your voices heard, and to spread the word to your neighbors, so that we can first get the bills out of committee. In the meantime, we must all be calling and writing these Senators. Change will only happen with a groundswell of demand from constituents throughout the state. The NY State Senate and Assembly are in session through June, and committees will disband even earlier. Therefore, NOW is the time to put pressure. Thank you for all you can do. Let us know how it goes!

Some further background….

There have been attempts to pass legislation regulating “smart” meters going back to 2013! All of them have fallen far short of being comprehensive, and none have had enough support to be brought up for a vote. This has left NY residents unprotected and has allowed electric utilities to exert their will over state policy makers.

Therefore, NOW is the time to coalesce into a legislative task force. The goal is for state legislators to pass comprehensive regulations that will require the building of fiber optic infrastructure that will connect utility meters to a central grid, while allowing the option to retain existing analog meters. We need thousands of people willing to take 15 minutes to convey talking points to their state reps. Here’s the background and even more comprehensive action steps to be pursued in the future.

Why “Smart” Meters Must Be Regulated

Smart Meter Panel
Smart meter panel in apartment basement

NY State utilities have been installing meters for over a decade that emit excessive levels of pulsed microwave radiation, which is hazardous to our health and property. These utilities and the Public Service Commission, the state regulatory agency, had a duty to know of harm caused by these RF-emitting meters. After all, for over a decade throughout the country  “smart” meters have been known to cause electromagnetic sensitivity, to cause surges that damage appliances, and even fires. The utilities fraudulently cite the FCC’s  1996 guidelines, which do not deal with the spiking of the microwave frequencies. Currently, the utilities have no grounds to cite these regulations due to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit decision on Aug. 13, 2021 that exposed the FCC’s failure to study thousands of pages of peer-reviewed studies that reveal the inadequacies of the 1996 legislation. See details here.

Regardless, NY State residents have had “smart” meter technology imposed upon us, with poorly written notices and opt-out instructions most people easily miss. Then we’re charged fees, forced to argue with utilities to get our analog meters back, and told that utilities have the authority to dictate terms we never knowingly gave consent to. In the meantime we are being  forced to undergo exposure to pulsed microwave radiation. As a result, NY residents have been subjected to an invasion of property rights, right to privacy, and denied our right to live in a healthy environment.

Utilities should have been required to explain how “smart” meters function, then installations should only have taken place upon written prior consent from the customer. Furthermore, research shows that “smart” meters are designed to collect data, profile behavior, and provide justification for  “congestion pricing,” which means higher rates. “Smart meters” provide no benefit to the public. They simply allow utilities to eliminate the employees who read our meters every month, and make profits from data collection enterprises. 

Consider the millions of people who live in multi-family homes and larger residential buildings. It’s impossible to get all residents to oppose and opt out of getting a smart meter. So those who do opt out are still disadvantaged between potential exposure to the microwave radiation, potential fire hazards, and dirty electricity coursing throughout the building’s electric wiring. What if you live near a building with “smart” meters installed outside? They could be emitting microwave radiation into your residence. Furthermore, just walking down the street past these meters exposes you to dangerously high levels of spiked microwave radiation. Here’s a typical example below.

smart meters on Albemarle Street, Brooklyn
Smart meters on Albemarle Street near Nostrand Ave. in Brooklyn

What YOU Can Do to Get Truly Smart Legislation
on “Smart” Meters

There IS  a solution! Technology exists whereby meters can communicate by fiber optic cable or electric power lines. Done correctly, they emit zero pulsed microwave radiation, can’t be hacked, have surge protection, and protect privacy. This renders RF-emitting meters obsolete. The industry knows these technologies exist. Using them would actually be “smart.”

We need legislation that moves metering device policy built on a wired fiber optic grid, provides shielded covers for existing RF-emitted meters until replacements take place, and allows customers with analog meters to keep them. They’ve worked safely for a century.

Now we must convince our state elected officials to pass ”smart” meter legislation in the public interest. If we can successfully build a statewide legislative action network, we can push for even more substantial policy improvements.

Here are additional policy objectives we can lobby for:

1. The Public Service Commission and utilities have bullied and coerced customers, imposing MICROWAVE RADIATION-TRANSMITTING utility meters incorrectly called “smart” meters, despite the fact that the original 2005 Federal Law merely allowed customers who wanted them to have them by choice. Legally, this represents an “opt-in” situation.

2. The Public Service Commission and utilities can no longer hide behind the 1996 Telecommunications Act due to the U.S. Court of Appeals D.C. Circuit Court ruling that the FCC’s radio frequency exposure guidelines are based on actions that are “arbitrary and capricious”.

3. I object to being forced to have to opt out of these misnamed “smart” meters.

4. I do not consent to being exposed, and object to forced exposure, to these meters’ hazardous, pulse-modulated microwave radiation spikes, which at their peaks can exceed FCC guidelines.

5. I object to the warrantless search-and seizure data collection that these meters perform within my home.

6. By contrast, designs exist for meters which operate by copper wire and fiber optic cable. These are more secure, accurate, reliable, and more energy-efficient. NY State already has some fiber optic networks. A full statewide fiber optic grid is to be built on which utility meters will be connected.

7. Analog meters have worked for nearly a century without incident. Customers must have the option of retaining them.

8. A state-wide moratorium on the so-called “smart meter” buildout is to be implemented as a wired fiber optic grid is built.

9. For all those with microwave radiation-transmitting meters, the utilities have an obligation to, and must be ordered to provide shielding such as meter covers and circuit-board filters which eliminate dirty electricity, along with fire hazard protections, This must begin immediately and be completed within one year statewide. To facilitate this action, utilities must provide the capability for customers to order meter covers that are easily attached, to be funded by them and the PSC.

9. Legislators must enact laws requiring misnamed “smart” meters to be replaced with the customer’s choice of analog or wired copper or fiber optic cable meters, and should require by law that all so-called “smart” meters be replaced statewide by December 31, 2025.


Are you ready to make “smart” meter regulation a reality? Email us at newyorkers4wiredtech@hushmail.com or call (641) 715-3900, ext. 128532#.

Updated: 5/4/2022

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