COOP Planning for Maryland Public Service Commission

In 2013-2014, Senior Policy Analyst Eric Oddo – in partnership with consultants from Tidal Basin Government Consulting, Continuity Operations Group LLC, and Vision Planning and Consulting LLC – developed a comprehensive Continuity of Operations (COOP) plan for the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC).

The mission of the Maryland PSC is to ensure safe, reliable, and inexpensive public utility and transportation service to Maryland’s citizens. It ensures that rates, terms, and conditions established for public service companies are just, reasonable, and transparent; adopts and enforces regulations that are in the public interest; creates standards and policies that protect the safety of the public; and explores innovation that will encourage the efficient delivery and minimal environmental impact of public utility services.

The team of consultants conducted interviews and workshops for every Commission entity: Accounting, Communications, Electricity, Energy Analysis, Engineering, Executive Director, Executive Secretary, External Relations, Fiscal, General Counsel, Information Technology, Legislative Affairs, Personnel, Public Utility Law Judge, and Staff Counsel. These interviews determined which public service functions would have to be legally continued in the 30-day aftermath of an emergency event.

The PSC COOP Plan is in full compliance with federal and state standards and best practices for continuity preparedness. The Plan established protocols about how the Commission will continue operating following any of the three fundamental emergency scenarios established by the Maryland Emergency Management Agency: (1) a loss of a facility; (2) a loss of systems; or (3) a loss of personnel.

This text is taken from the CHHS Fall 2014 Newsletter

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