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USDA issues grants to 10 utility companies for smart grid upgrades

SUBNET Solutions Inc | Monday, May 02, 2011

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently issued a grant to Carroll Electric, which services more than 69,000 customers nationwide, to install and utilize new smart grid technologies.

Carroll will now begin using smart meters that allow for real-time monitoring of usage, which can lead to better regulation of energy and lower associated costs. Carroll currently claims its service rates are 29 percent below the national average.

"We are continually seeking ways to help our members reduce their energy use," said Carroll Electric CEO and president Rob Boaz. "This technology is a perfect fit with our commitment to provide safe, reliable and affordable service."

Boaz also hopes the installation of these advanced meters will improve the "reliability and affordability" of its members' electric service.

After its successful smart meter pilot program in 2009 that involved more than 6,000 of its members, the utility has installed close to 30,000 meters in various counties.

In addition to Carroll, nine other rural electric cooperatives and utility companies received grants from the USDA.

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