Fraud behind Smart Meters
As you can see below by the recent article below, PG&E has still not figured out that THEIR EQUIPMENT IS BEING TAMPERED WITH BY OUTSIDERS! Completely relocated, reconnected ~ altered records to cover up the evidence. CLICK ===> Dear PG&E, Here is evidence of Smart Meter fraud ~ would U like names?
Public anger at PG&E helped sink Prop 16
By Dana Hull
Posted: 06/09/2010 10:49:20 PM PDT
Updated: 06/09/2010 10:49:21 PM PDT
For years, PG&E had a horrible reputation. It fought with environmentalists and local residents over the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant and was portrayed as a heartless monopoly that knowingly contaminated groundwater in the hit movie “Erin Brockovich.” When that film was released in 2000, PG&E was being blamed for rolling blackouts and California’s energy crisis. The low point for the company came in 2001, when it filed for bankruptcy.
Since then, the San Francisco-based utility has worked hard to re-brand itself as a progressive company that is active in the community, passionate about the environment, committed to climate change legislation and compassionate toward its gas and electric customers.
But if Tuesday’s election results are any indication, public anger at PG&E — particularly among its 15 million customers — may be at an all-time high.
California voters rejected Proposition 16 by a 5 point margin, despite the fact that PG&E spent $46 million on a statewide advertising blitz while opponents raised less than $90,000. With 100 percent of precincts reporting, 52.5 percent of the electorate voted No on Proposition 16 while 47.5 percent voted yes.
Proposition 16 called for two-thirds majority support from voters before local governments could form or expand municipal utilities. PG&E said the goal was to give taxpayers a voice if their governments spend public dollars to get into the power business.
But critics said the company was trying to sabotage communities eager to procure greater portions of their power supply from renewable energy sources like wind and solar.
Perhaps most telling about the election outcome is that within PG&E’s vast service territory, which stretches from Bakersfield to the Oregon border, Proposition 16 lost by a far wider margin than it did statewide: 57.9 percent voted no, while 42.1 percent voted yes.
In Fresno County, where there have been widespread complaints about the accuracy of PG&E’s so-called smart meters, 61.1 percent of voters rejected Proposition 16. In Yolo County, which lost a fierce battle with PG&E when it tried to leave PG&E and join the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, 66.3 percent voted no. Santa Cruz, one of the most liberal counties in the state, voted no by 70.2 percent.
PG&E blanketed the state with full-page newspaper ads, radio and television spots and mass mailers. The mailers, one showing a solar panel in a field of flowers, framed the issue as one of taxpayers rights.
But consumer advocates say voters found PG&E’s ads deceptive and were incensed that the utility spent tens of millions of dollars on the campaign. PG&E stresses that the money came from “shareholders,” but the vast majority of revenue is ultimately derived from ratepayers.
“The message from customers is: We don’t like the way you are spending our money,” said Mindy Spatt of the consumer advocacy group TURN, The Utility Reform Network. “PG&E is shooting itself in the foot all over the state. Their smart meter program is a disaster, and they just flushed $46 million. What a colossal waste of money.”
On Wednesday, PG&E declined to answer questions about what appears to be widespread disaffection among its customers.
“Wherever they live, the voters have spoken,” said PG&E spokesperson Katie Romans. “Moving forward, we will continue to focus on our customers, who have always been our No. 1 priority.”
California’s municipal power agencies, including those in Santa Clara, Palo Alto and Alameda, opposed Proposition 16 but were prohibited by law from campaigning against it. That left the work to a ragtag group of activists who spread the word via homemade fliers and videos and small protests.
Dennis Snyder, an accountant in San Jose who is registered as a “decline to state” voter and requested a Republican ballot, said he voted against Prop. 16 because PG&E was “trying to manipulate the vote.”
The city of Santa Clara has its own utility and “there’s nothing wrong with that,” Snyder said. He also said he thinks PG&E “pulled something over on people” with smart meters.
Also fueling anger against PG&E is the utility’s proposal to raise an additional $4.2 billion in revenue over the next three years, a move it says is needed to upgrade aging infrastructure. Consumers have widely blasted the proposal — which, if approved, would lead to higher utility bills — at public hearings.
One Bakersfield resident urged state regulators to cut PG&E executive compensation instead.