Annapolis, MD (CBSDC) – Senator Jim Rosapepe (D, College Park) and Senator Brian Frosh (D, Montgomery) today wrote to Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) Chair Doug Nazarian asking the PSC to impose fines of more than $100 million each for PEPCO and BGE to fund a “Surge Reserve” of trained workers to end long power failures.

And they have launched a web-based petition where consumers can add their names.

“The results of (the power companies’) failure to face reality and modernize are clear to all Marylanders — food rotting in refrigerators, hourly workers laid off, small businesses closed for days, and hundreds of millions of dollars in goods, services and productivity lost by our constituents,” they wrote.

In 2011, the Maryland legislature required the PSC to set reliability standards and increased the fines the PSC can impose to $25,000 per customer per day.

With this authority, the Senators urge the PSC to impose significant fines on the utilities for their power failures, based on the economic dangers they say they caused and the need to incentivize them to change their behavior.

Rosapepe and Frosh also say that a plan to modernize our electric infrastructure needs to be developed, including selective undergrounding.

In additon they’d like the PSC to propose a “surge reserve” plan to the Governor providing enough technically-trained local professionals to restore service promptly to customers in the next predictable extreme weather event.

Senators Rosapepe and Frosh are asking Maryland citizens to sign on to their letter at either of the following websites:

here for PEPCO customers  -or-  here for BGE customers.

Recent violent storms that hit the area caused customers all over the DC, Maryland and Virginia area to be without power for several days.

Do you think these fines should be imposed on the utility companies? Leave your comments below.


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