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(Electric) Power to the People

In response to proposed regulations from the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) to set standards for electric company service reliability and quality, AARP Maryland submitted comments calling for stricter reliability standards and better customer service performance for Maryland’s electric utilities.

See Also: Affordable Utilities Now
“Marylanders have been frustrated with long power outages, high costs of electricity and feelings of insecurity during recent power outages,” said AARP Maryland State Director Hank Greenberg.

AARP called for the PSC to do the following in its regulations:

  • Endorse significant, measurable improvements in reliability for each utility over the next four years
  • Improve customer call center performance at each utility by focusing on the amount of time it takes customer service representatives to answer the phone, the number of callers that hang up without talking to a representative and performing at high quality even during major outages
  • Require the utilities to develop not just a “Major Outage Event Plan” but a Major Outage and Restoration Plan, which is submitted to the PSC for review, public comment and approval
  • Identify additional enforcement mechanisms within the PSC’s authority to ensure a utility has provided adequate and reasonable customer service in establishing rates, including considering a customer compensation mechanism as one approach

More than 13,000 AARP Maryland members participated in a tele-town hall to find out what could be done to control costs and improve service reliability in the electric utilities industry. Participants told AARP affordability and reliability issues remain a huge concern for them.

Submit your written support of AARP’s comments on RM 43 (these proposed regulations) now to:

PSC Commissioners
William Donald Schaefer Tower
6 St. Paul St., 16th Floor
Baltimore, MD 21202

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