County Executive Isiah Leggett called for the report in 2010, after Pepco struggled numerous times to prevent widespread and lengthy power outages following storms. The report offers 30 recommendations for the utility, according to Leggett.
"This is not designed for a quick fix. As it indicated, we didn't get into this problem overnight, and we're not going to get out of it overnight," he says.
But the report does urge Pepco to speed up its five-year plan to improve reliability, saying the utility's proposal falls short in both scope and urgency. County Council members focused on another finding in the report, that Pepco's profits did not drop the way its service reliability did. In particular, Council member Marc Elrich pointed to the fact that Pepco under spends what it budgets for tree removal.
"They put into their rate request what they were going to spend. They got the rate request, and then they didn't spend the money. It doesn't get more brilliant than that," Erlich says.
Pepco officials, as well as its holding company, were interviewed for the report, as was Baltimore Gas and Electric, the utility that provides power to most of Maryland, and has not had the problems with outages that Pepco has.