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In this paper we study decentralized strategies to effectively integrate Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) measurements with the grid infrastructure. Different communication strategies among smart meters in an AMI network are studied relevant smart meter readings are collected in a decentralized manner and then transmitted to the substation. We show that it is possible to accurately aggregate and recover the total energy usage for households in a distribution network, both when nodes broadcast in a synchronous manner and when nodes broadcast in an asynchronous manner. Furthermore, we show that it is possible to accurately aggregate and recover all meter readings without having to sample from each node in the network. This aggregated information is then used by the substation for efficient and reliable design and planning purposes. Coordination at the meter level is also useful for load demand prediction, providing a means to identify load patterns that can be employed for optimal dispatch at the substation level and to drive incentives at the consumer level.