Smartass Meters Make IOUs for California IOUs by Taking Solar Power But Not Metering It

Smartass Meters Make IOUs for California IOUs by Taking Solar Power But Not Metering It

Everyday now an ABC Solar client is calling saying that their solar investment is worthless in that they are still receiving bills up to a year after Permission-To-Operate (PTO) was granted by Southern California Edison (SCE). Generally speaking, one billing issue among our solar clients is a anomaly that is dealt with, but when a trend shows itself concern grows.

ABC Solar checked with other Sothern California based solar contractors and they too report billing purgatory for their SCE clients Post-PTO. Each Post-PTO billing error creates an “I OWE YOU” from SCE to the ratepayer. Besides the monetary value of each solar ratepayer who is providing SCE solar power but is not getting credit for it, it is the Smart Meter itself that setup California ratepayers to be abused.

The California Public Utilities Commission via its RULE 21 requires SCE to inform both the ratepayer and the commission in each instance where a ratepayer is granted PTO but SCE has not established Net-Metering billing within 30 days. SCE has told ABC Solar it sent out a generic email in November 2019 attesting to their non-compliance. But, none of my staff, myself or my clients have seen such communication. Further, Rule 21 clearly states SCE must report to the CPUC for each case. And! We have cases after that date.

Sometimes more is more, but in this case the client, Mr. More, does not deserve to be lost in the Smart Meter rejection of solar and then SCE out-of-compliance reporting behavior.

To further complicate issues SCE claims blanket secrecy Post-Permission-To-Operate and will only communicate with the ratepayer. This modus operandi of SCE is known as a Negative Option and is illegal both federally and in the State of California. A Negative Option is where SCE can behave in bad faith and gain monetary value with their actions, but the Ratepayer has the onus to report and opt-out of the SCE bad faith behavior.

Legal minds will know Negative-Option as being against the law and one basis for the Breakup of AT and T monopoly so many years ago. I interpret the ruling that broke up AT and T as one where the regulator and the regulated had a “Cozy Relationship” (The Courts Words) to the detriment of consumers.

The regulator allowed the Negative Option Marketing by AT and T which allowed AT and T to add services and thereby increase bills unilaterally. Only when the consumer noticed and took action – A Negative Option – and called AT and T to cancel the new unilaterally added services.

SCE loves them smart meters, but still uses Negative Option Billing to abuse clients. It is clear that with Smart Meters in place the CPUC could order SCE to put ratepayers in the most advantages billing structure in real-time. The CPUC is supposed to protect ratepayers but it just is not the case.

If you are a SCE customer, I would call them immediately and ask for a full rate review of your account. Ask the kind operator at SCE to find the best and most advantageous rate plan for you. Heck, I would call your utility company and ask the same of them, even if not SCE. The fact that CPUC supports SCE ability to continue to use Negative Option Billing by immunity from state laws, in particular PUC 1759, is bad.

Illegal Negative Option Billing is a just reason to breakup the CPUC and remove superior court immunity from SCE and other IOUs.

As a way to help protect ABC Solar clients we have formally filed a Point of Clarification and as required by RULE 21 a Formal Written Notice of a dispute.

Please visit here to find out our to prepare your Formal Written Notice of a Dispute

Related Links
ABC Solar
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