On the 27th of August this year at the city commission meeting, without notification or community input, a motion was passed to buy Smart Meters that will have lasting negative health and economic consequences for our community. This decision by the commissioners was made with no information and misinformation, and although they are responsible, they are not to blame.
Seven bids were received and accepted meeting the requirements of the RFP (Request for Proposals). They were then evaluated by a committee who chose the Landis+Gyr proposal, even though others at half the price met the RFP ($530,000 vs $990,000). This biased evaluation and the positive recommendation of the PUAB were then presented to the commissioners by our new city manager without the dollar amounts and the other major problems experienced by these Smart Meters. 80 percent of the commissioners relied on the information provided by their staff to shape their vote.
In response to this outrageous action, businesses, property owners and knowledgeable voters got together to form 'Advocates for a City of Health'. Some spoke at the last commission meeting expressing major concerns and as a result, Commissioner Clark put this issue on the agenda of the next commission meeting on the 13th of this month.
In the meantime, a petition is circulating to put a moratorium on this AMI/real-time system while we examine all of the issues – meter reading (lots of positive solutions), problems with the meters and computer system, the results of a $50,000 study showing a 20 percent loss in the electrical system from aging transformers and lines – then look into the need for a high tech and high dollar system.
We hope that the commissioners will rectify their mistake and work with the citizens so that we can sit down together to visualize a healthy and prosperous future... and then make it happen.