It was about a decade ago when Naperville city officials were bullying Naperville residents with the forced installation of so-called Smart Meters. City officials tried just about every devious method possible to make home owners succumb to accepting RF (radio frequency) meters being slapped on their homes. Residents formed the Smart Meter Awareness Group to fight for their rights. Their concerns about RF meters included health risks, security of data collected, maintaining privacy of usage, security of the electric grid, and the lack of safety of the meters as a potential fire hazard.
Naperville officials tried to sell the ‘scam’ to residents by saying it will save money with lower electric bills. Thus far not one resident or business has saved a nickel. The City also said the ‘Smart’ meters would allow residents to see how much electric they are using and when, as if a resident didn’t know when the lights were on in the family room, or if the wash machine was in use.
It became so vitriolic, the City resorted to arresting residents when armed Naperville police accompanied installers to the homes of those resisting the installation. It made national news which didn’t make Naperville look family friendly. Some residents filed suit against the City for its heavy-handed methods, resulting in hefty settlements for some residents.
Now here we are about ten years later, and Naperville city officials are again trying to install RF meters, this time for water usage. City officials are trying to avoid the screw-ups they had with electric meters, including an opt-out feature. The letter the City is sending to residents states, “customers can decide to continue receiving manual water meter readings at an additional cost. Opting out of the Water 2.0 project will require a monthly fee of $31.44 for a technician to manually read the water meter, as well as a one-time charge of $31.29”. Who knows what the ‘one-time charge’ is for, maybe the annual city council Christmas/Holiday party? That’s a total (penalty) of $408.57 for the first year. If that doesn’t convince residents to not opt-out, the monthly fee can easily escalate to $50, $100 or $1000 a month. The bottom line is that the City will have its way, one way or another. Simply and bluntly stated, the City has no problem screwing residents, which was also proven during the electric Smart Meter fiasco.
The letter also stated, “the automated water meter reading process’ will allow for ‘improved accuracy’, which makes me wonder how much have I been over-charged for taking a shower or doing a load of wash, or much will I be overcharged with the new not-so smart meters.