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FirstEnergy to increase tree trimming in WV

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CLARKSBURG, WV (AP) — FirstEnergy is ramping up tree trimming activities in West Virginia this year.

FirstEnergy spokesman Todd Meyers said that $44 million has been budgeted for the utility's vegetation management program, up $14 million from 2012.

The total includes $34 million in 34 counties served by Mon Power and $10 million in Potomac Edison's service area in the Eastern Panhandle.

Trees along more than 1,600 miles of electric lines have been trimmed by contractors so far. Another 2,400 miles will be trimmed by the end of the year, Meyers told The Exponent Telegram.

In January, the West Virginia Public Service Commission ordered all electric utilities to submit plans to trim vegetation along distribution and transmission lines. The companies also must submit proposed rate recoveries for the increased costs associated with the trimming programs.

"The commission is suggesting a more comprehensive plan is appropriate," PSC spokeswoman Susan Small told the newspaper.

Small said plans are due July 23.

 

 

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