Smart Meters Have 2 Dallas Women Seeing Red

Residents plan on taking complaints to PUC meeting in Austin

By Omar Villafranca
|  Monday, Mar 15, 2010  |  Updated 11:15 PM CDT
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Mad at Oncor and Not Going to Take It Anymore

Two Dallas County women are taking to the streets to fix their electricity bills.

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Mad at Oncor and Not Going to Take It Anymore

A group of Dallas residents plans on demanding answers from state regulators over their smart meters.
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Two Dallas County women are taking to the streets to fix their electricity bills.

Ree Wattner's electricity bill at her North Oak Cliff home has been high the past three months, and she blames her new Oncor Electric Delivery smart meter.

Wattner, her friend Tricia Lambert and other volunteers have been walking their neighborhoods to find others with abnormally high bills since a smart-meter installation.

"There are many citizens out here that can't pay their electric bill," she said. "It's not a handful of us."

Wattner said she is gathering complaints and will deliver them to the Public Utility Commission at its meeting next month in Austin.

"They're not doing a moratorium on installing these things and obviously, there is a problem -- although Oncor is still saying there is not," she said.

Wattner and Lambert have started carrying red shop rags representing working people to show their anger with the smart meters, Oncor and the PUC.

"I'm so mad, I'm seeing red," Lambert said.

They even created a Web site for residents to chat about the latest issues with their smart meters.

"This is going to be a long battle," Wattner said.

An Oncor spokesman said the company is confident its smart meters are working properly. He said the utility is meeting with neighborhood groups to talk about smart meter issues.

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