EDITORIAL: Still time to consult

One of the hot topics at this week’s Union of B.C. Municipalities convention is BC Hydro’s controversial decision to bring in smart meters.

One of the hot topics at this week’s Union of B.C. Municipalities convention is BC Hydro’s controversial decision to bring in smart meters.

This has been an issue for many people around the province.

Aside from some irrational fears of radiation, there are legitimate public concerns over privacy, loss of jobs for meter readers and billing based on time of use.

However, the smart meter issue boils down to one simple fact. The government pushed the idea through without proper consultation, and has continued to stick with the proposal despite a change in leadership and a new minister of energy, who has already taken a much closer look at all aspects of Hydro’s operations.

Energy Minister Rich Coleman is perhaps one of the most pragmatic members of the cabinet. He was asked by former premier Gordon Campbell to take on many challenging files, and he relishes hard work.

He has already shown a willingness to make some changes in the way Hydro does things.

Thus it would be no real problem for him to ask Hydro to delay the smart meter program, at least until there has been full consultation with the public.

Coleman knows, as do all members of the cabinet, that this lack of proper consultation is what doomed the HST, and it is unlikely that he would like to see a repeat of that fiasco.

BC Hydro could arrange a series of public meetings on the topic, and give the public a chance to ask questions and present their views. Hydro can bring out experts on smart meters and also outline exactly why the corporation feels they are so important.

Hydro and the government have not handled this issue well thus far, but there is still time to rectify much of the damage.

– Black Press

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of Oct. 18

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

Abbotsford’s Jake Virtanen, Vancouver Canucks playing waiting game for new contract

Yale Hockey Academy product files for arbitration with Canucks, hearing set for Oct. 28

“Solitary” Update: Dramatic action scene to be filmed in Agassiz

‘Solitary’ will film a break-in, getaway at Kent Outdoors

Schnitzelz restaurant returns to Abbotsford

Fried meat establishment moves from Aldergrove to Abbotsford

Abbotsford student dies after medical incident in class

Rick Hansen Secondary School offering additional counselling for students who require it

167 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death recorded as B.C. enters 2nd wave

Three new healthcare outbreaks also announced

At least 49 cases of COVID-19 linked to wedding in Calgary: Alberta Health

McMillan says the city of Calgary has recently seen several outbreaks linked to social gatherings

Wreckage of decades-old plane crash discovered on mountain near Harrison Lake

A team of Sts’ailes Community School students helped discover the twisted metal embedded in a glacier

ERT, VPD response to White Rock home connected to homicide: police

Search underway in the 15800-block of Prospect Crescent

‘I am not leaving without my son,’ says mother of missing Manning Park hiker

Family and friends continue to search for Jordan Naterer, after official efforts suspended

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Bear kills llama on Vancouver Island, prompting concerns over livestock

Officers could not track the bear they feel may not fear humans

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. dad pledges to appeal quashed call for mandatory masks, distancing in schools

Bernard Trest and Gary Shuster challenged health, education ministries’ return-to-school plan

Most Read