Danged if you DON'T! ComEd sued for NOT installing smart meters
By Jesse Berst
Quick Take: The Chicago suburb of Naperville has been the site of some of the country's most virulent anti-smart meter complaints and demonstrations. But just down the interstate, a suit has been filed asking ComEd to return $182 million to consumers for its failure to start installing smart meters. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.
We've previously documented ComEd's slow, painful saga. It succeeded in getting legislation passed for grid modernization only to have it vetoed by the Illinois governor, only to have the veto overridden only to have the public utilities commission cut the amount allowed only to propose a slow rollout to accommodate the lower budget only to have the governor get involved again...
The complaint filed last week, which seeks class action status, accuses ComEd of violating an Illinois Commerce Commission order to begin its smart meter rollout in 2012. Instead, as reported by the Chicago Tribune, "ComEd sued the state regulator for cutting funding it expected to receive for the program and said it will not be able to deliver the devices until 2015."
The attorney filing the suit claims "ComEd has pulled off the biggest bait-and-switch in Illinois history." ComEd, of course, vigorously denies the allegation, calling the lawsuit "baseless and completely without merit." It claims to be in full compliance with the ruling and is working as mandated to submit a proposal for faster deployment.
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Jesse Berst is the founder and chief analyst of Smart Grid News.com, the industry's oldest and largest smart grid site. A frequent keynoter at industry events in the U.S. and abroad, he also serves on advisory committees for Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and the Institute for Electric Efficiency. He often provides strategic consulting to large corporations and venture-backed startups. He is a member of the advisory boards of GridGlo and Calico Energy Services.