My way highway

meter SQWith its proposed merger with Fortis energy receiving maximum scrutiny now, we’ve been talking about how Central Hudson has been on a charm offensive, with its television and radio spots attempting to smooth the way so that the Public Service Commission will approve the giant deal, one that we’ve opined doesn’t appear to be so beneficial to its customers.

And thus we come upon the ham fisted treatment of the Woodstocker who didn’t want Central Hudson’s new meter on his home, the one that’s not a smart meter but is in the ‘family’ of smart meters and the guy feels like it’s making his partner sick. (See story, Page 1.) So he asks politely if he can remove it, gets all the paperwork together to show them what he’s doing, gets a new analog meter compatible with Central Hudson’s works, and when he receives no response from the company, he removes the meter and replaces it.

Central Hudson then comes to his house and literally cuts his wires. Shuts him down. No power. No talking about it. You’re off.

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Central Hudson doesn’t make electricity anymore. It buys it. But Central Hudson is the only one that has the wires and transmits it to your house. A monopoly. Without Central Hudson…oh, you can run a generator, if you can stand the noise and afford the gas. But that’s about it. No power. Even if you have solar panels, you’re still putting that power into the grid and Central Hudson is carting it off and is still sending power in your house through its monopoly wires. So when Central Hudson says you’re off, you’re off. Yes, the guy can get his power back, if he comes crawling back to Central Hudson — accept a new meter same as the one he didn’t want, and pay $348 for the wires that Central Hudson cut.

See, this is no way to win public favor. If you even care. Central Hudson and Fortis feel that the public won’t stand in the way of money, so it will keep sweetening the merger deal financially.

This isn’t meant as a commentary on the efficacy or potential health dangers of smart meters. There will be lots of material forthcoming on that and a dialogue will ensue and some will agree and some will disagree, and some will be ok with smart meters and some will not.

We would emphatically support the New York State legislation that would allow individuals to opt out if they did not want a smart meter on their house. And the utility companies will fight that, but it can be done.

But we’re also angry at a monopoly that can just cut your wires, leaving you with no place to turn, and no way to fight them. Central Hudson’s feelgood campaign to merge with Fortis should be considered in that light.

There are 3 comments

  1. Maura Rubencamp

    Totally correct position on Central Hudson forcing “smart meters” despite illness and intrusion of privacy and homeowner objection. Fortis the Canadian conglomerate will be worse and the standard of US companies serving US utilities worked for a century and the Officers at Central are reported to receive big bucks bonuses for cooperation.Follow the money. The voice of reason is Brian Hollander!

  2. Raji

    WOW!I did not see this article until today – December 19th, 2013! What a great writing Brian! Thank you!

    Yes, Central Hudson is a monopoly – but we should also begin to look beyond “the utility companies” to really see where this big push to get these meters installed on EVERY home and business is coming from – please do the research and you will be astounded and also educated — and hopefully outraged!!!

    We never did get our electricity back – and further – Central Hudson had the audacity to contact our landlord – after we have been without electricity for over 6 months – and try to coerce him into putting that pulsing microwave radiating meter (YES! it WAS A SMART METER!!!) back on our home! After 6 months of us not being a customer – after we found our way by using our brains and creativity to survive without their nasty dirty electricity – they had the nerve to still attempt to radiate us. Fortunately for us, our landlord lives in California – and guess what Central Hudson idiots? YEP, you guessed it, our landlord knows the TRUTH about these radiating meters and he knows we are people of integrity – unlike the utility companies who are forcing people to attach these radiating devices to their homes! The joke is on you Central Hudson – because our landlord told you to go take a hike!

    By the way, one thing Brian said is not 100% fact — you can, in fact, go off grid with solar and NOT connect to the utility company – you just have to find the right solar company to help you do it. You have to ask them – “Do you go through the utility company?” and if they say “yes” steer clear and keep looking.

    This is a battle of whether or not – at the VERY LEAST – we, as AMERICANS – have a CHOICE!!! Hopefully the utility companies and the powers behind them will get their disgusting plan shot down by “we, the people” because what they are doing is WRONG – just WRONG – in so many ways. We have Truth on our side and all they have is darkness – the Light always wins!

  3. steve romine

    Thank you Brian Hollander for hitting the nail on the head with your article. Somehow I missed this article when it came out. Why the power company thinks they have the right to slap a microwave emitting device on our home without notifying us or asking our permission ,in view of the fact that microwave radiation (EMR) has been classified a class 2B carcinogen,is beyond me.I guess the only logical explanation for this behavior is that we must really live in a fascist country for them to think that thy can get away with doing to us what they have done which is to cut us off from our source of electricity. Steve Romine

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