In contrast to Annapolis, where just one person took to the microphone, more than a dozen spoke in Howard County at a hearing about a rate increase requested by Baltimore Gas and Electric Co., the Howard County Times reported.
The hearing comes less than two weeks after a report, submitted by the Public Service Commission staff, called BGE’s service in certain Ellicott City neighborhoods “below average.” The report is part of an investigation into BGE's reliability in areas of Ellicott City.
At Wednesday night’s hearing, 14 people testified against the rate increase, the Times reported. BGE wants to raise about $175 million in the first year of the hike, which will apply to the distribution fees on customers’ bills. With that money, BGE has said it plans to make improvements to its infrastructure.
Font Hill Community Association President Jack Seuss testified, according to the Times. His neighborhood was found to be one of the poorest performing feeders in Ellicott City, according to the PSC staff report.
“While improving reliability is key,” Seuss testified, according to the Times “I have no confidence that this rate hike is going to deliver improved reliability.”
Wednesday’s hearing was the fifth and final to be held in the state. The PSC will make a decision on the rate hike by Feb. 23.
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