Letters to the Editor - March 5

March 05, 2011

Power merger marks new chapter in history

To the editor:

The merger of FirstEnergy and Allegheny Energy marks an important new chapter in our company’s history. Today, we’re part of a larger, stronger company that is well positioned for future success.
By combining the strengths of Allegheny Power with FirstEnergy, we have new opportunities to create value for our customers and the communities where we live and work.

As part of the FirstEnergy family of companies, we’ll remain focused on safety, environmental stewardship and operational excellence. Our new regional headquarters in Washington County underscores our commitment to regional operations and ensures that we make the locally focused decisions that are right for you.

We believe that a local utility company is only as strong as the communities it serves. As president of Maryland operations, you have my personal commitment that we will work together for our combined success.  

Initially, you won’t see changes to your monthly billing statements or how you contact us. You’ll still rely on the same local electric company to provide safe, reliable service, read your meters and make repairs. However, over time, we hope you will notice positive changes — including the reintroduction of the name Potomac Edison. We also will be better positioned to provide more support for education and community-based organizations. And, we expect you will benefit over the long term as a result of efficiencies and economies-of-scale that result from our merger.

You also should begin to see other benefits, including even more efficient restoration efforts following major storms. We now can call upon crews from our sister companies in the region — 10 like-minded electric companies — to provide emergency assistance and support.

Great communities have a shared vision of success and commitment to achieving it.  I thank you for the opportunity to be a part of your community and will work hard to provide you with the high-quality service you expect and deserve.  

Jim Fakult
President, Maryland Operations

Parents-citizens group to host open house

To the editor:

Sunday will be a very exciting day for us. On this day, the parents and citizens of Washington County will have a new citizen-powered, education driven organization opening its doors: Washington County Parents And Citizens.

The mission of WCPAC is to provide a unified voice for the parents and citizens of Washington County. We are committed to working with parents and citizens to update them on school system related issues, and to encourage innovative collaboration.

WCPAC (our website is believes in a transparent public servant system, and will engage in researching and advocating issues related to any and all feasible aspects of the operations of the school system.

Throughout our effort, our goal is to cultivate highly positive and strong relationships, research and educate, boost improvements and promote transparency and fiscal responsibility.

As an extension of that effort, our secondary website,, will serve as our online community for all Washington County.

This site not only will serve as a communications hub, but a feature-rich community that is for citizens, about citizens and by citizens.

We will be hosting a launch party Sunday at the Clarion Hotel on Dual Highway. It will be from 2 to 4 p.m., and light refreshments will be served under the atrium. The invitation is open to anyone who would like to come down and chat with us — from BOE members to county commissioners, Chamber of Commerce to parents who want to know more.

We hope to see you there.

Dottie Gruhler
President, WCPAC

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