Senator Kelley realized she did not have the votes to get the bill out of Committee and did not want to have a negative vote on the record for next year. Just as in previous years we learned a great deal, and the utilities, the PSC and the OPC are all taking us very seriously now. We have the opt out we were seeking which was a major goal going into this session. I am totally convinced that without our efforts, the PSC would have made smart meters mandatory for everyone, forcing us into very difficult situations. I obviously have a great deal of concern regarding those who cannot afford to opt out, particularly those living next to a bank of smart meters, but there is little we can do about that except advise them to move. We may start providing advice to people how to lower their energy bills so that they can afford an opt out. But that will have to come a bit later.
I want to thank each and everyone one of you for your efforts this session. We knew it would be tough, and it was. But I think with our combined effort we made a tremendous difference. Now that we have done this three times, I see a real savvy amongst our members. We now know that we need to start this July for the 2015 legislative session. This will put us in a better position come January. We also learned the absolute necessity of having a paid lobbyist to help us. Her advice was invaluable, and her contacts and access awesome. We still need to finish paying off what we owe her. If you have not contributed already to this effort, please do so now. Just to remind you, you will make out the checks directly to MSMA and note it is for lobbying so we get the matching funds from our special donor. Please mail them to:
c/o Jonathan Libber
2507 Willow Glen Dr.
Baltimore, MD 21209
Once we have installed a separate, donation button to fund a lobbyist, you can make an electronic payment from our website. If there are any funds left, we will use them for lobbying in the next legislative session. These specific contributions are not tax deductible.