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Connecticut Legislature To Investigate Utilities’ Response To Irene

A home damaged by Irene - East Haven, CT - Sep 5, 2011 (credit: Connecticut Governor's Office)

A home damaged by Irene – East Haven, CT – Sep 5, 2011 (credit: Connecticut Governor’s Office)

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HARTFORD, CT (AP / WCBS 880) - Connecticut legislators are looking into how the state responded to Tropical Storm Irene.

WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau On The Story

Several committees of the General Assembly say they will schedule an informational hearing to address preparation and response by utilities, performance of telephone and telecommunications companies, communication between utilities and municipal leaders and the effectiveness of municipal reverse 911 systems and other communications.

Senate President Pro Tem Donald Williams said Tuesday the hearing could be as early as next week. He said much was done right, but that problems such as a lack of coordination between highway crews clearing downed trees and utility workers slowed efforts to quickly restore electricity and telephone service.

“I’m among many legislators who want to hear directly from Connecticut Light & Power,” State Rep. Andrew Fleischmann told WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau.

The most asked question is why the utility is not starting the project of buying electric cables underground.

CL&P president Jeff Butler told reporters last week that the project would be cost-prohibitive.

Instead, he said “The area we will focus on and have been focusing on, is the trees in the vicinity of our lines.”

Gov. Dan Malloy said Monday he is ordering a review of the response to the Aug. 28 storm that left hundreds of thousands without electricity.

How do you feel that Connecticut and its utilities could improve their storm preparation and response? Sound off below in the comments section.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)