Tuesday night was the PSC hearing in Ellicott City at which the local residents could tell the PSC about their experiences with many years of power outages. Communities in the forefront of the reliability movement from the beginning were well represented in the testimonies, and we again learned for the first time of a couple of communities we didn't previously know were having power outage problems.
BGE's spokesperson gave a most interesting rebuttal to our complaints: Rob Gould didn't refute our assertion that there are power outage problems in Howard County but he said we don't have it as bad as other BGE customers. Yes, you heard that right. This line was delivered with a straight face, and I have avoided adding numerous explanation points and question marks but it makes no sense. I got an email this morning in which the writer said he felt like he was in a Lewis Carroll novel when he heard Gould's comments. Obviously, we citizens get to decide when we've had enough, and there is no need for us to check whether our reliability situation is bad, really bad, horrific, or abysmal before our complaints are justified. (If BGE knows where the 'real' problems are, what are they doing about them?) It's interesting that Rob Gould and Jeannette Mills (Chief Customer Officer & VP) have no outage issues at their Howard County homes. Mike Fowler (Public Affairs) and PSC Chairman Douglas Nazarian, both Catonsville residents, also state they have no outage issues at their residences. Do they just know where to buy the houses on the reliable feeders or what?
I would be surprised if large sections of Catonsville and Arbutus do not have the same problems with reliability that the older construction in Howard County has. As is well known, the suburbs were developed over time with locations closest to Baltimore largely being developed first. That would mean the infrastructure is likely even older in parts of Baltimore County than it is in Howard County. Judging from Rob Gould's comments, don't assume your problems are on BGE's 'fix-it' list. There may be somebody out there with 'abysmal' reliability which will trump your 'horrific' status every time.