Rather than let the experts at the Georgia Public Service Commission address the issue, lawmakers in Georgia have decided to address consumer smart meter concerns with the passage of Senate Bill 459. What is most concerning about the bill is that it fails to acknowledge the financial implication of smart meter opt-outs. Well, that is not completely true. This bill goes where no state has gone before in that it recognizes there could be fiscal issues related to opting out of smart meters; it simply refuses to apportion any responsibility on those making the opt-out decision. Below is key language from the bill:
(i) Notwithstanding any other provision of this title, the commission is authorized to provide that consumers may elect not to use smart meters of any investor owned electric light and power company subject to regulation by the commission; provided, however, that the commission shall not create and regulate a surcharge for consumers who make such an election.