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MLGW News Release
 
MLGW Smart Meter Purchase Receives Approval
August 20, 2013
The Memphis City Council today approved Memphis Light, Gas and Water’s budget expenditure of $10.1 million for the purchase of 60,000 smart meters from Elster Solutions.

The smart meters—electric, gas and water—will be installed at 24,000 homes, starting later this year. Eighty percent of the homes are located in Memphis; 20 percent are elsewhere in Shelby County. The selected areas have existing MLGW telecommunications assets and will allow MLGW to cut four to six meter reading routes out of 21 billing cycles.

Smart meters will be distributed in selected neighborhoods located in zip codes 38002, 38017, 38103, 38104, 38105, 38106, 38107, 38111, 38112, 38114, 38115, 38119, 38120, 38126, 38134, 38135, 38139 and 38141. Selected homeowners were notified by letter earlier this year. To date, only 125 customers, or 0.52 percent of the total, have opted-out. MLGW also agreed to waive the opt out fee.

Customers who do not live in the selected neighborhoods do not need to opt out at this time, as their current meters will remain unchanged.

Smart meters are simply digital meters that can communicate remotely with MLGW, opening up an array of choices for customers and the utility.

This smart meter expansion is expected to conclude in mid-2014. Upon completion, MLGW will have 61,000 smart meters out of its 1.1 million meters system-wide. Currently, there are 1,000 smart meters in use from a three-year Smart Grid Demonstration pilot. MLGW’s goal is to fully implement smart meters by 2020.

Ninety-five percent of Smart Grid Demonstration participants would recommend smart meters to a friend. A recent J.D. Power and Associates survey showed that 74 percent of customers polled want a smart meter – a 51 percent increase from 2012. Smart meters benefits include prepay; faster service; faster outage restoration; more information about daily usage; ability to keep gates locked and pets outside and more. To learn more about smart meters, visit www.mlgw.com/smartgrid.