MPUC Orders Audit: CMP “Smart” Meter Program Financials Change from $25 Million Net Savings to $80 Million Net Cost

The Maine Public Utilities Commission is calling for an audit of Central Maine Power’s “smart” meter or AMI program (click here to see the MPUC’s draft order, dated 31 May 2013). The program was predicted to save CMP $25 million. That has now been revised to forecast a net cost of $127 million or maybe $99 million—or, in the ‘final’ current estimate, $80 million. The PUC claims the projected savings was in large part why they initially approved the project. Auditors will be chosen by the PUC and paid for by CMP ratepayers (read: you and me!), with the audit projected to be completed next summer.

CMP has recently submitted a request for rate hike equivalent to about 8.2% per year for the next five years. Interveners can petition to be a party to this case until about 22 June.

Evidence of harm from radiofrequency radiation as emitted by “smart” meters continues to accumulate worldwide while, in the Maine “smart” meter safety investigation, PUC Hearing Examiners recently rejected all intervener evidence submitted as legal citations accompanied by peer-reviewed journal abstracts. Approximately 1,200 of these abstracts/citations had been submitted into evidence (click here to go to the abstract/citations links). “So much for seeking the truth,” said Ed Friedman, lead complainant in the “smart”-meter case.

Meanwhile, the Maine Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability (OPEGA) continues to investigate the PUC.

“I’m taking bets as to whether the PUC will grant CMP a rate increase as per usual despite all of the problems (I say ‘yes’ and hope I’m wrong).” said Friedman.