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Pepco problems continue as customers complain


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Published on: Thursday, October 11, 2012

By Christa Puccio

ROCKVILLE County residents have come forward with complaints of Pepco billing issues from swapping out old meters with Smart Meters, according to the county council president.

“It doesn’t have anything to do with the Smart Meters per se, but it had something to do with swapping out meters and when they swapped out meters, they were using estimates for the next month’s billing cycle,” said Montgomery County Council President Roger Berliner.  “It turned out that those estimates were no relationship to reality and residents were complaining that they were literally paying $300 more for an estimated bill than they’d ever paid in their lifetime.  I opined that while Pepco does have the authority under its tariff to use estimates, in my judgment it is an abuse to use that tariff to use estimates that use no bare no relationship to reality.”

Pepco did acknowledge that there is a billing issue.  “This was in the Northwood Park, Four Corners neighborhoods in Silver Spring,” said Pepco Regional Communications Director Myra Oppel.  “We had an estimated billing error because of the timing of the change from old meters to new meters.”

Berliner said he was made aware of this issue by an email from a grassroots organization.  “Pepco does have every month’s billing on file,” said Berliner.  “They do bill customers and they do have that on file, so it doesn’t seem to me to be too hard to figure out what a reasonable estimate would be.  It would be an estimate that is at the average of their billing as opposed to something that is way outside the norm.”

Berliner said Pepco’s vice president advised him that Pepco is “all over it and they’re going to take care of it.”  “I was pleased to see that Pepco recognized that it did have an issue on its hands and did take immediate steps, in its judgment, to rectify the situation,” said Berliner.  “So, my hope is that this matter can be rectified expeditiously – that no one, at a time where everyone is pinching pennies, it is absolutely not ok to use an estimate that is for a fact two and a half times greater than what they have ever used in terms of energy in 23 years.”

Oppel said she believes it was an isolated incident, but if any customer has a billing issue, he or she should contact call 202-833-7500. “We’re calling all of the effected customers we’re cancelling all the incorrect bills and are rebilling those accounts based on actual readings.”

Reader Comments - 2 Total

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Posted By: teshon On: 3/20/2014

Title:

I have the same issue and overcharged for the so called the estimated one
I just moved in 25 days ago and my bill unbelievable high. How do I solve this problem.

Posted By: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure On: 11/11/2012

Title: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure

Check to see what brand of wireless meter you have. Is it a Lanid & Gyr meter? If so be alert to the following:
http://www.forbes.com/sites/williampentland/2011/05/03/not-so-smart-meters-overbilling-californians/
The utility, Pacific Gas and Electric Company, admitted yesterday that about 1,600 so-called “smart meters” had charged customers for phantom power. The meters, manufactured by Landis+Gyr, malfunctioned when they get too hot.
If you have a GE wireless meter be alert to the following:
http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2012/09/self-combusting-smart-meters/
(A General Electric smart meter after it burst into flames at a home in Illinois. Image courtesy of Shirley Bayliff)
If you have a pacemaker or medical implant device be aware of this:
http://marylandsmartmeterawareness.org/smart-meter-news/videoheart-and-pacemaker-disruption-from-electric-meter/
To opt-out see: http://marylandsmartmeterawareness.org/opt-out-news/option-to-defer-smart-meters/




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