PG&E ‘Smart’ Meter Comes to Twain Harte


Posted by Annie in Twain Harte News on July 31, 2009

As I sit here to write, I am still shaking and mad as a wet hornet. We were just accosted by PG&E. I feel violated and I’m angry, very angry about it.

Here I am lying in bed, fast asleep when I’m awakened by a huge boom noise coming from outside the room I’m sleeping in. I bolt upright in bed, throw on my shoes and run out the door, only to find a man standing near my electric meter and the old meter is laying on the ground.

Devvy fights Smart Meters – Devvy Kidd — My statement to the Texas Public Utility Commission

I had planned to call PG&E and protest their new so-called “Smart Meter.” They sure didn’t waste anytime, we only got notification they were changing our meter out two-days ago.

The problem is they didn’t call, they didn’t make an appointment or anything. The man I found outside my house said, “I knocked on the door and no one answered.”  Well duh, we were sleeping.

The hubby and I both work from home, we were up late last night working on some new projects and this is the worst part, my husband was doing a critical data migration on a clients system. We still don’t know if any data was lost. We initially thought we had lost our router during the abrupt power loss.

After giving their technician a piece of my mind and scolding him for things he has no control over, I came back in the house to call and complain to PG&E. I’ve been sitting on hold now for over 30-minutes and my patience is failing.

I haven’t had the pleasure (dripping with sarcasm) of calling PG&E in ages. I dial their 800 number, only to hear something in chinese, then mandarin, then English. It wasn’t a short something, it was a very long message. I feel like I’ve moved to hell or communist China.

PG&E isn’t helping matters by repeatedly thanking me for my call and making promises that someone will be with me shortly. Of course they give me no indication if shortly is measured in hours, days or weeks.

As I am sitting here I searched google for “PG&E Smart Meter Complaints,” I shouldn’t have been surprised but honestly I am.

My husband and I figured the new “Smart Meter” would not only allow them to read our meter, without having to send out meter readers, but we surmised that they didn’t get the kind of response they were looking for, when they offered people $25 to allow PG&E to monitor their usage and shut them down during times of increased power usage.

Now I’m reading that everyone is complaining of higher electric bills, after their “Smart Meter” is installed. I’ve been very happy with our electric bill for the past several years. We have worked hard to keep our bill down. We’ve taken steps to conserve energy, like turning off lights when they aren’t in use; we disabled our electric base board heaters — over four years ago. We’ve also replaced most of our appliances with Energy Star Compliant ones. This might all be for nothing.

In the past five years we’ve seen our water bill almost double but our electric bill has stayed pretty steady. Now, I’m terrified our bill is going to drastically increase.

I’ll update this if I ever manage to get a “customer service” representative on the phone. I won’t hold my breath.

 According to Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), these new services include the ability to turn on and off electricity remotely, instantaneous notification of power outages, and deployment of variable billing rates based on supply and demand of power. [Read higher cost!]

Michael Peevey, head of the state regulatory commission, said, “Without these meters, we will limit the ability of people to truly change their consumption habits.  However, it doesn’t stop at the meters.  Once the customer is informed, we must ensure that there is sufficient incentive to get the customer to take action.”

In the meantime, check out the following links. 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Twain Harte Fire Update!


Posted by Annie in Twain Harte News on July 30, 2009

Those headed toward Twain Harte for the weekend should be advised that air conditions are fair at best.

This morning the smoke from the Knight Fire, which has been burning about 15 miles from Twain Harte for several days now, covered the area like a blanket, making breathing for those with asthma or other respiratory ailments difficult.

Fortunately, the heat is giving us a break, since most area homes lack air conditioning it simply isn’t feasible to shut up the house. We are using an evaporative cooler (which we picked up at OSH, in Sonora) and closed up the windows a little.

According to My Mother Lode News, the Knight Fire covers an estimated 1,643 acres and is 10% contained at this time. 1,016 firefighting personnel are on site in the extremely remote Stanislaus River Canyon.

Bill Jennings Invitational?

On an entirely different note. I was stopped tonight by a couple of young men in front of the new “Piece of Harte” restaurant. They invited me to attend the Bill Jennings Invitational Tournament, held at the Twain Harte Golf Club — tomorrow.

I spent quite a bit of time this evening searching online but wasn’t able to find any information. It’s possible it’s just a rumor but the gentlemen seemed sincere. If you have details, please share.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Jupiter Fire


Posted by Annie in Uncategorized on July 26, 2009

According to a local store clerk at 7-11 in Twain Harte, a fire has broke out about fifteen miles from town in an area known as Jupiter.

According to the store clerk area residents are being evacuated.

The smell of smoke has begun wafting into town. Residents should be mindful of the fire and be prepared to evacuate, should conditions warrant it.

Tags: , , , ,