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Tuesday, February 01, 2011

PEPCO, Washington Gas and Maryland Governor O'Malley

Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley (D) is supporting legislation that would impose fines on PEPCO and other utilities that fall short of new state "reliability standards," including ones laying out how quickly power should be restored after snowstorms. O'Malley is reacting to the large number of Pepco customers left in the dark for days after a January storm. Reliability standards would spell out expectations for utility companies.

PEPCO doesn't object to standards, as long as the standards are fair. PEPCO believes that if fines are utilized, the state should also provide incentives for superior performance.

Several other states, including New York, have similar initiatives in place. The Maryland legislation, which is being drafted, would direct fines collected from the utilities to affected customers in some cases. A draft of the bill leaves it to the Public Service Commission, which regulates utilities in Maryland, to develop a schedule of fines.

PEPCO, which serves 778,000 customers in Montgomery and Prince George's counties and the District of Columbia.

And while PEPCO is dealing with the governor, legislators, regulators and their customers, Washington Gas is competing with them for those very customers.  Washington Gas is mailing out the advertisement below:
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Dear ______________   _________________,


Choose Washington Gas Energy Services, Inc. (WGES) as your electricity supplier and lock in a price that's 10% lower than Pepco's current rate. Your price will remain the same for 12 solid months.

Thousands of your neighbors are served by WGES. They shopped for their electricity and chose an independent supplier that allows them to PAY LESS without sacrificing an ounce of convenience or reliability. You can, too! Enrolling is quick and easy!


This is limited to the first 2,000 customers, so don't delay!

* Pepco’s current price (8.90 ¢/kWh) for Standard Offer Service electricity for rate class R is 9.885¢/kWh effective through May 31, 2011. Please see www.pepco.com for more information on Pepco’s other rate schedules.

WGES prices are for electricity generation and transmission only, are not regulated by the Maryland Public Service Commission, and do not include utility distribution, taxes or other utility charges.

Washington Gas Energy Services, Inc (WGES) is not the same company as Washington Gas, a regulated utility. WGES is a subsidiary of WGL Holdings, Inc. and an affiliate company of Washington Gas. (MD PSC License No. IR-227)
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Although the Center supports 'real' electricity deregulation and competition, we are not endorsing any one utility over another.

(Wash Post, 2/1/2011, Washington Gas Energy Services Email)

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