Friday, February 26, 2010

Blair Lee Protests Barve Response to Power Outages

Gazette columnist Blair Lee, one of MoCo's most ardent defenders, is crying foul on House Majority Leader Kumar Barve's call for an examination of disproportionate power outages in MoCo during the recent blizzards. In his letter to the Public Service Commission (PSC), Barve noted that Pepco suffered 78,000 outages in MoCo against just 7,700 in Prince George's County and asked the PSC to find out why. That rubbed Lee the wrong way, and he sent the following email to Barve.

From: Blair Lee
Sent: Friday, February 26, 2010 12:34 PM
To: 'Majority Leader Kumar Barve'
Cc: ''
Subject: RE: Barve calls for investigation of power outages in Montgomery County


I am surprised at your selfish, parochial response to the power outage disparity between MoCo and P.G. Montgomery is a wealthy, privileged community with a progressive world view. Demanding Pepco service at the expense of our less-fortunate neighbors flies in the face of Montgomery’s core principal of adopting a statewide perspective when confronting state issues.

Historically, when others have a need (education funding, teacher pensions, tax increases) we have been the first to sacrifice for the greater good. That’s “The Montgomery Way.” Surely, wealthy Montgomery has the financial ability to pay for its own Pepco service upgrades with local taxpayer funds so more money is available to help our neighboring Prince Georges customers and ratepayers. I am confident that Prince Georges would do the same for us under reversed circumstances.

Finally, I expect that your near-sighted parochialism will hurt you in this year’s elections. Our voters don’t take kindly to politicians who put Montgomery’s self-interests ahead of the state’s other jurisdictions and residents. Perhaps you have forgotten that Montgomery’s mission is to help lift up Maryland’s less fortunate and less enlightened citizens no matter where they live. Again, that’s the “Montgomery Way” for which we are widely known, respected and admired by the rest of Maryland.

Blair Lee