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Montgomery County Will Appeal Pepco Rate Hikes

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Markette Smith

Montgomery County will appeal a recent decision allowing Pepco to charge its customers more.

Earlier this month, the Maryland Public Service Commission approved a rate hike for Pepco customers that would add more than $2 to the average rate payer's monthly bill. In addition, the commission allowed the utility to charge a "grid resiliency" fee, though both increases were far below what Pepco was seeking.

Even so, the hikes angered Montgomery County leaders, and county executive Isiah Leggett is now asking the county attorney to appeal the PSC's decisions. Leggett says Pepco should not be allowed to charge customers more for system upgrades, which is what the utility says the additional money is needed for, until it is proven the work Pepco has done in the last few years has actually improved reliability.

The utility embarked on an expansive plan to upgrade its system following thunderstorms in 2010 that knocked out power to thousands for more than a week. Pepco officials later admitted to the public service commission that it ranked among the worst utilities in the country when it came to frequency and length of outages.

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