The transition from the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) to PSEG, has begun, marking the end of the LIPA’s 15-year tenure as Long Island’s power source.
Although Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s bill still has a few hurdles to overcome, the PSEG logo is already replacing LIPA’s across Long Island. A deal was struck in 2011 to bring the New Jersey-based company to the area, and the new legislation gives PSEG several new powers, including “control of capital and operating budgets, storm preparedness and response, call centers, computer systems and customer service,” according to Newsday.
Rates will be frozen for two years, and LIPA will be reduced to a minimum number of employees. Its board of trustees will also be trimmed from 15 to nine.
Cuomo said customers can expect a higher level of service from PSEG than they've gotten from LIPA and its contractor, National Grid. Gone will be the "bifurcated, two-headed monster," of LIPA with National Grid operating in the background, sometimes at cross-purposes.
"You were funding two bureaucracies, two operations, and the company that was running it wasn't really competent to run it," he said.
The bill is still awaiting Cuomo’s signature.LIPA has been under fire for their post-Sandy power restoration efforts. At the height of the outages, nearly 950,000 customers were without power. Thousands remained in the dark for several weeks.
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