Fortis clarifies radio-off program

FortisBC responds to a recent article printed in the Trail Times.

We would like the opportunity to clarify some information that appeared in the Trail Daily Times about FortisBC’s Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) project (Council unable to opt village out of smart meter program, Trail Times, Sept. 10).

In its July 23 decision approving the AMI project, the BC Utilities Commission directed FortisBC to design a radio-off program based on several principles, including that customers who choose a radio-off meter pay the cost of administering the option to prevent the erosion of benefits for the majority of customers.

We have filed our application to the BCUC for an option that will allow electricity customers to receive a radio-off advanced meter by paying any additional costs related to their choice.

In the application, we are proposing a one-time $110 fee as well as a $22 charge per manual meter read. These fees are FortisBC’s best estimate of the additional costs of reconfiguring and reading meters for radio-off customers.  This radio-off option, including these costs, must be approved by the BCUC before the program is implemented.

We believe advanced meters will have many benefits for our customers. Electricity rates will be lower with advanced meters than without them, and advanced meters will provide more informative and flexible billing, a significant reduction in electricity theft, and instant notification of power outages.

For more information about the AMI project, visit fortisbc.com/ami or call 1-866-436-7847.

Ian Dyck,

Manager, Electric Advanced Metering Infrastructure FortisBC