GREATER Dandenong council will formerly oppose the installation of smart meters in the municipality but doesn’t have the power to block the introduction.
Councillor Peter Brown moved a motion at Monday night’s council meeting to formerly oppose the installation of the meters, support individuals’ rights to opt out and support any future legal action undertaken by the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV).
However, the decision has no weight as the State Council voted against any MAV action.
Mount Alexander Shire Council submitted a motion to the MAV’s State Council on 20 September proposing the MAV investigate any health problems associated with smart meters and to take any appropriate action but the motion was not passed meaning no action will be taken by the MAV.
Cr Paul Donovan opposed the motion on Monday because he felt it held no weight.
“I raise an objection over the wording,” he said.
“It is only tokenistic.”
Cr Brown said the council needed to have its opposition recognised in policy should any legal action take place in the future.
“It is underlying and supporting our opposition to smart meters in so far as MAV actively pursuing this matter on behalf of councils,” he said.
“We do support other councils who have opposed (the installations).”
Cr Brown said residents should not be forced to have the meter boxes installed.
He used examples of councils in the United States and United Kingdom which have successfully lobbied for residents to choose whether to have the meters installed.
Cr Brown said he was concerned about health problems, particularly for the many apartment buildings being constructed in the local area.
“All the little meter boxes are lined up waiting for someone to come in and read them, just imagine the sheer volume of electromagnetic field that surrounds that particular unit,” he said.
“I certainly wouldn’t want my bedroom right beneath the meter box.
“If people want to opt out of being radiated, the can and they should.”