AUGUSTA, Maine — Maine lawmakers are choosing to stay out of the debate over whether to let residents opt out of smart meters that are being installed in homes and businesses by Central Maine Power.
The Legislature’s Utilities and Energy Committee on Monday effectively killed a bill that would have imposed a one-year ban on installation of the meters. That means the Public Utilities Commission will be allowed to decide the merits, costs and effects of letting some people opt out of the program.
CMP is replacing 600,000 electric meters, with the federal government paying half of the $200 million cost.
Ken Fletcher, who directs the state’s energy office, tells the Portland Press Herald that it was “prudent” for lawmakers to defer to utility regulators on the issue.