Letters for Friday, November 15, 2013

• Meter cost questioned • We stand united • ObamaCare not affordable

Meter cost questioned

With reference to the TGI Sunday newspaper, Nov. 3, KIUC will be notifying those of us who opt-out of the new “smart-meters,” program that we are to pay:  A large amount for a one-time “set-up-fee,” plus some $10.27 per month charge for “non-standard meter reading costs.” Our “non-standard”  (dumb meters) will be read once a month by a meter-reader driver, or two or three, who drive around the island to read some 3,000 non-standard meters. The other 30,000 smart meters are most likely read by “RF” signals, (radio frequency) meters that probably transmit to a cell tower nearby. So we, non-standard co-op members, are to cover the costs of manual meter reading.

Assume that of 3,000 meters, 1/4 are commercial; 3/4 are residential.

Total “set-up-fee” comes to $218,040! How does KIUC figure $218,040 “cost” for “set-up-fee? The dumb meters are already set up. Where does the set-up cost come from?

Meter reading: 3,000 meters x $10.27/month = $30,810/month

Meter reading: Annually, 12 months x 30,810 = $369,720.  

Assume three meter readers, and divide three into $370k/year, and viola! $123,000 per reader! Is this for real? Utilities in some U.S. states let “dumb meter” customers read their own meters, monthly, and the utilities conduct annual audits to make adjustments if meter readings don’t jibe. Maybe we 3,000 people could read our own meters and send our readings in to KIUC. That would be nothing like the annual amount we are each to be charged: $10.27 x 12 = $123.24.

Further: It is possible that a massive solar burst from our sun could stream plasma that could fry electronic devices. A small coronal storm could fry all 30,000 smart meters with their sensitive electronics, and leave our “dumb analog” meters untouched. So 3,000 of us could still have KIUC service.

Alan Faye, Princeville

We stand united

Resist, refuse, and reveal. Tourists are making public statements now that they will not be returning to Kauai, and are beginning to sell off their condos and timeshares and spread the word regarding the seed companies growing influence and expansion on our island, and their operations into tourist and residential areas. Each seed company at the hearing said they were not going to expand their operations.

The seed companies are recruiting in the Kapaa corridor. And brave Native Hawaiians, whom they are targeting, are having the courage to refuse the job. I just heard an amazing story from a very close family member of mine. Shame. Without a moratorium, these seed companies can now use all of the available state land to expand to every singe square inch of our island, where there is state land, and take up all of the available agricultural land, leaving none for food production, putting our island in severe food security risk. These are nonunion jobs. The individuals responsible for taking out that moratorium should be ashamed of themselves.

The state, whom some see as our saviors in this instance, is the very one leasing these companies the land, and allowing them to expand, while at the same time requiring only voluntary compliance for what we the people are demanding as our right to know. State land is the people’s land. It is not private land. The majority of the land leased to seed companies are state lands. Public lands.

The public has every right to demand disclosure. And not voluntary, but mandatory. The only people trying to divide and conquer and cause dissension are the seed companies. Not us. We stand united in our support of 2491. Accept the mayor’s veto, and override it. Refuse. Resist. Reveal.

Anne Punohu, Kapaa

ObamaCare not affordable

With all I am seeing, reading and hearing, it appears that the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) is not really that affordable nor is it expected to be.

The president actually lied to the American people when he said, “You can keep the health insurance plans you already have … there will be no new taxes for those earning less than $250,000 … health care premiums will cost less.”  

From all that is coming out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, it appears that none of these statements are true. People are receiving cancellation notices from their current insurance providers; the premiums are turning out to be higher, not lower, and there are various taxes included in the health care bill.

Most importantly, the Affordable Care Act violates my right to religious liberty by including plans that provide contraceptives and abortion services without giving any transparency so that I can objectively check out which plans include these services, so I can avoid choosing a plan that includes abortion or contraceptive provisions.

So much for a supposedly affordable health care system that I will be able to afford and one that will not cause me to violate my religious principles.

Barbara Ferraro, Hilo

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