Opt out fee for smart meters has been dropped, other fees still remain

Opt out fee (KTVL/Sarina Sandoval)

Pacific Power has dropped a $137 opt-out fee for Oregonians who don't want a smart meter installed at their residence.

On Tuesday, Oregon's Public Utility Commission approved the utility's request to drop the opt-out fee, but a $36 monthly meter-reading fee still remains.

The utility will evaluate the impact of smart meter installations and return to the commission to report on costs of reading analog meters, which could affect the monthly fees.

More than 70 million smart meters have been installed in the U.S. There have been 88,000 installed in Jackson County.

Pacific Power says the smart meters send out data periodically during the day producing lower levels of electro-magnetic frequencies.

"The meters actually call us when they lose power, so we're quicker to get a truck rolled out to get an outage shorten. We can reconnect service there or connect service in a matter of minutes." Pacific Power, Managing Director, Mike Cochran.

All installations should be done by September.

If you would like to opt out, you can do so at anytime by calling Pacific Power or if an installer happens to arrive at your door you can opt out that way as well.

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