Chicago South Siders must wait until their much wealthier neighbors receive cost-efficient digital meters from Chicago’s major power utility Commonwealth Edison.
As part of the $2.6 billion smart grid and systems upgrade passed by the Illinois Legislature in 2011, ComEd agreed to install roughly 4 million “smart meters” throughout its Chicago and Northern Illinois market regions.
According to ComEd’s current installment calendar, Chicago South – where median yearly income runs $32,000 – will receive smart meters after 19 communities within ComEd’s Maywood operating center, where median income is 70 percent higher.
Even after meters are installed, some South Siders my lack the computer access to take advantage of smart meter efficiency programs.
“What are you going to do about people who don’t have computers and Internet access and can’t take advantage of good information?” asked Richard O’Toole, director of customer strategy for ComEd. “It’s a legitimate issue.”
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