Ohio Senator Kris Jordan Introduces Smart Meter Consent Bill

Ohio Senator Kris Jordan (R)Ohio energy customers may soon have something to cheer in the ongoing battle for consumer rights and protection.

Ohio Senator Kris Jordan (R-Powell) introduced Senate Bill 181 on September 3. 

If passed, SB 181 would “require electric distribution utilities to obtain a customer’s consent prior to installing a smart meter on the customer’s property.”  

According to Section 4928.661. (A) of the bill, “smart meter” means an electricity meter that uses two-way communication to collect electricity usage and related information from a customer and to deliver information to a customer.”

Under current PUCO rules, Duke Energy is installing “smart meters”, aka Grid Modernization, for its Ohio customers.

Cincinnati is among the first to experience a smart grid in Ohio according to a SmartMeters.com post in January 2010.  Duke Energy began the smart meter pilot project the previous year.  It’s “success” enabled Duke to win a $200 million grant from the Department of Energy.  

$200 million taxpayer dollars.

Some Duke customers, who oppose installation of “smart meters” for reasons of health, privacy, and property rights, are working toward an “opt out” plan.

In a Cincinnati Enquirer letter to the editor on August 27, Duke customer Verlaine Gray of Liberty Township describes Unhappy With Duke Energy’s Bullying while facing installation of the smart meter or have power shut off.  According to Gray:

“My husband and I are senior citizens, who for health, privacy and safety reasons did not wish to have a “Smart Meter” attached to our home. I have been working behind the scenes for the past year on behalf of myself and others to get our State Legislature or PUCO to offer an opt-out policy, as many other states have in place. A smart meter is a digital electric meter which is replacing the long used analog meters for measuring a customer’s electric use. The smart meters have been a controversial issue and have been attached to customer’s homes, mostly without the customer’s knowledge.”

SB 181 currently has no co-sponsors or committee assignment.