Vermont examining smart meter concerns

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Vermont legislators will take steps in 2013 to investigate customer concerns surrounding smart meters, according to a report in the Rutland Herald.

State Senator Robert Hartwell said learning more about smart meters is one of his biggest priorities in 2013. The state Department of Public Service last month announced it was conducting a search for an outside source to evaluate how the wireless meters could affect health and security issues. But the burden of proof rests on the new research, as the state said it has no reason to believe the meters are harmful.

"We need someone who's independent of state government, and independent of the special interests, who will do an honest assessment of what the impacts are," Hartwell said in an interview with the Herald.

Smart meter opponents in Vermot are petitioning Governor Peter Shumlin to impose a moratorium on smart meters in the state. The state currently offers an opt-out for smart meters, which unlike many programs across is the U.S., is free to customers who take advantage. A similiar initiative is underway in Maine, where regulators this summer ruled that more research about smart meter health imapcts is warranted.

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