SILVER SPRING, Md. (WUSA) ---The Maryland Public Service Commission Friday approved an $18 million rate increase for PEPCO, the troubled utility that has been the target of public anger since a storm three weeks ago that knocked out power for days to customers who lived in sweltering heat, waiting for the lights to come back on.
The rate increase translates to roughly a two dollars and two cents monthly increase for a typical residential customer.
The PSC rejected the bulk of PEPCO's rate increase request, turning down $50 million of the $68 million request saying "PEPCO's application lacked the evidence required to substantiate its request."
"It's a very wishy-washy decision. They have approved $18 million in new money from the ratepayers for PEPCO and that's not how we need to deal with PEPCO," said Montgomery County Councilman At-Large Hans Riemer, a PEPCO critic.
"PEPCO is a crisis situation. We need a clear, aggressive message to them that they have to change their ways. Giving them more money is not the right kind of message," he said.
What should the PSC have done?
"The PSC should say no more money, not a penny more until you have made the changes in your company that are necessary to get service to where it needs to be," Riemer said.
PEPCO did not accept a 9News Now request to talk about the decision in a television interview, instead issuing a statement that reads in its entirety "We have received the Commission's order and will not have any comment until we have reviewed it."