Connecticut’s Two Storm Panel filed its final report Monday, including 82 recommendations for the state to take in order to prepare for storms like August’s Hurricane Irene.
The panel was originally formed by Gov. Dannel Malloy after Irene knocked out power to thousands of state residents and was expanded after October’s snowstorm that left even more Connecticut residents without electricity. It recommended setting performance standards for utilities companies following storms and pairing the standards with monetary penalties, should the companies fail to meet them. It also emphasized the need for stronger utilities infrastructure, and suggested a tax increase on utilities to finance such projects.
The report included recommendations to monitor rising sea levels as a result of climate change as well as trim tree branches that present a danger to power lines. Malloy said his administration would have a response to the reports by the end of the week.
Hurricane Irene reportedly killed at least two people and left more than 700,000 utilities customers without power. The October snowstorm, meanwhile, dumped up to two feet of snow and left over 850,000 residents without electricity or heat.