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Tougher New Rules For Power Companies Proposed

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The Maryland Public Service Commission is seeking authority to fine Pepco and other power companies if they don’t meet tough new standards for reliability and customer service.

The commission has proposed rules that would establish how quickly companies must restore power after an outage. The rules would also say how rigorously companies must inspect their lines and how quickly they should answer calls from customers.

The proposed changes come after complaints from Pepco customers who suffered long power outages after major storms last year.

Officials at Pepco, Baltimore Gas and Electric, and the Maryland Office of People’s Counsel, which represents consumer interests, said they were studying the plan, which the commission published on its website Wednesday evening.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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