Smart Meter opponents lose appeal bid

Smart Meter opponents lose appeal bid

By Keith Fraser, The Province November 13, 2012

A group protesting the installation of thousands of smart meters across the province has been dealt a setback by B.C’s highest court.

Andrea Collins, a Saltspring Island resident, and the Citizens for Safe Technology Society had sought leave to appeal a decision by the B.C. Utilities Commission rejecting their challenge to the smart meters.

But in a ruling released Tuesday, the B.C. Court of Appeal said Collins and the society, who believe the smart meters are unsafe, had not met the test for obtaining leave to appeal.

The society had argued before the commission that B.C. Hydro was installing the high-tech devices without proper certification.

The commission said that the installation of the devices was exempted from requiring a certificate and rejected the group’s submissions.

A reconsideration by the commission was also rejected, resulting in the society seeking leave to appeal the decision before the B.C. Court of Appeal.

The society argued that the standard of review applicable to the proposed appeal was the correctness of the commission’s decision.

But B.C. Court of Appeal Justice Edward Chiasson said the proper standard was whether the decision was a reasonable one.

Regarding the merits of the appeal, the judge said that the applicants did not have some prospect of success and had not raised a substantial question to be argued.

“I conclude that the applicants have not met the test for obtaining leave to appeal the reconsidered decision of the (commission). The application for leave to appeal is dismissed.”

Collins referred questions to Sharon Noble, who is the director of a coalition opposing smart meters.

“All I can say is I was disappointed but not terribly surprised,” said Noble, a Victoria resident.

“This is not going to stop us. This was one attempt to try to bring some democracy back into this entire program on behalf of thousands and thousands of people across the province who are refusing these (meters).”

She said there is a class-action lawsuit before the Human Rights Tribunal on behalf of people she says are suffering health problems from the devices.

The meters are being installed in order to comply with the Clean Energy Act, at a cost of $1 billion.

The group contends that the wireless meters, which communicate with the electricity grid through short bursts of radio waves, pose a health risk, but Hydro says that the devices are safe.

kfraser@theprovince.com

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COMMENT:

First of all…..WE should all thank those that have taken on this issue and pursued this matter through all legal venues available / possible. Kudos to you all.

QUOTE:

But B.C. Court of Appeal Justice Edward Chiasson said the proper standard was whether the decision was a reasonable one.

Regarding the merits of the appeal, the judge said that the applicants did not have some prospect of success and had not raised a substantial question to be argued.

“I conclude that the applicants have not met the test for obtaining leave to appeal the reconsidered decision of the (commission). The application for leave to appeal is dismissed.”

Welcome to the INjustice system…..or Justice Industry.

The Courts Appeal system is basically a red herring… it is not a second chance to roll the dice. The Appellant has to show flaws existed in the previous judgement, …or new evidence is now available to submit…etc. etc.

One could have an excellent case,but the often deep- pocketed vested interests(what irony BC Hydro is owned by us, the General Public, and we also  pay the Judge) know how the game is played and can manipulate the issue to still maintain their status quo.  As I often maintain, the ultimate blame lays at the feet  of the MLA Politicians who approved this Smart Meter and betrayed our trust.

This should not at all be interpreted that the Smart Meter opponents were wrong,its simply how the system works. I say much of the blame lays at feet of our Gov’t paid “Health Officers”…who seem to conveniently follow a skewed intellectual  party line , when there are numerous opposing views by their professional peers.

Perhaps the battle cry should be ” WE, the General Public,  have only begun to fight….fasten your seatbelts “

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