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NYSEG, Other Utilities Face State Investigation

Bob Joseph/WNBF News

New York State Electric and Gas, along with several other utilities, will face scrutiny after their power restoration efforts following Hurricane Sandy were criticized by customers and government officials.

Governor Cuomo has appointed a panel to review the response of utilities in the aftermath of Sandy and other recent weather-related disasters.

The panel is to be chaired by Robert Abrams, a former New York State Attorney General.

Cuomo said there are serious questions about whether utilities have been properly prepared to handle natural disasters that lead to widespread power outages.

NYSEG’s efforts to restore electricity in northern Westchester County were strongly criticized in emails by the state director of operations, Howard Glaser.

According to news reports, Glaser sent messages to NYSEG president Mark Lynch, blasting the utility’s response to the Sandy-related outages.

In one email, Glaser described NYSEG as being “by the far the poorest performing utility” in the aftermath of the damage caused by the storm’s wind and rain.

An angry Glaser at one point proposed a new motto for the utility, which is owned by Iberdrola: “NYSEG – Lights Out, Nobody’s Home.”

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