7. Next Steps

As noted above, it is our desire to have the opt-out option implemented without undue delay. Consequently, SCE is directed to file a Tier 1 Advice Letter to implement a smart meter opt-out option for the Edison SmartConnect Program and to establish a Smart Meter Opt-Out Tariff within 15 days of the effective date of this decision. This Advice Letter filing shall:

1. Establish procedures for residential customers to select the opt-out option if they do not wish to have a wireless smart meter.

2. Establish procedures to inform customers that the Edison SmartConnect Program has been modified to include an opt-out option for residential customers who do not wish to have a wireless smart meter at their location.

a. A customer currently on the delay list shall be informed that the customer will be scheduled to receive a wireless smart meter unless the customer elects to exercise the opt-out option.

b. Customers selecting the opt-out option shall be informed that they will receive the previous form of meter they had prior to the installation of a wireless smart meter. Therefore, an analog meter shall be the opt-out option for customers who previously had an analog meter at the time the wireless smart meter was installed, while the opt-out option for customers who previously had a non-analog, non-smart digital meter will be a non-analog, non-smart digital meter.

3. Adopt the following interim fees and charges for residential customers selecting the opt-out option:

4. Establish a new two-way memorandum account to track revenues and costs associated with providing the opt-out option until a final decision on costs and cost allocation issues is issued.

As part of implementing the opt-out option, SCE shall comply with the following guidelines:

1. Residential customers may begin signing up to participate in the opt-out option 20 days after the effective date of this decision. SCE shall have a dedicated phone number for customers to call and sign up for the opt-out option. This number shall be staffed by customer service representatives trained to explain the opt-out option and fees.

2. Since a residential customer may opt-out for any reason, or no reason, SCE may not require a customer to explain or state why he or she wishes to participate in the opt-out option as a condition for signing up.51

3. SCE shall not charge customers the initial fee or the monthly charges until the opt-out meter has been installed at the customer's residence.

4. Customers may pay the initial fee to participate in the opt-out option over a three-month period.

5. SCE may remove a customer from participating in the opt-out option if the customer fails to pay the initial fee within three months of installation of the opt-out meter or the monthly charge.

6. A customer may enroll in the opt-out option at any time. However, a customer shall not be allowed to request to participate in the opt-out option at the same residence more than once during any twelve-month period.

7. Customers currently on the delay list shall be individually notified of the opt-out option by certified mail, or an equivalent service that provides documented proof of delivery and receipt. Customers shall have at least 30 days' prior notice that their current meter will be replaced with a wireless smart meter unless they participate in the opt-out option.

8. Customers who affirmatively prevent the installation of a smart meter (i.e., denying access to the property or blocking access to the analog meter) shall be deemed to have elected the opt-out option.

The September 21, 2011 Assigned Commissioner's Ruling (ACR) directed the utilities to allow residential customers who had not yet received a wireless smart meter to retain their analog meter and be placed on a delay list while the Commission considered the Joint Application. Since we are now modifying SCE's Edison SmartConnect Program to include an opt-out option, the ACR is no longer in effect for SCE.

This decision determines that a second phase in this proceeding is necessary to consider cost and cost allocation issues. We anticipate that a prehearing conference to discuss the scope and schedule of this second phase will be scheduled within 45 days of the date this decision is issued. The assigned Commissioner will issue a scoping memo to reflect the issues to be considered and schedule.

51 However, SCE may ask this question if a response is optional.

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