In this July 16, 2019, file photo, a Central Maine Power smart meter is seen in Portland. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Advocates for Maine energy consumers have made the case that regulators in the state should apply strict standards in creating a rating system for the state’s utilities.

The Maine Public Utilities Commission is developing the rating system to measure the quality of the service provided by the utilities. The system would resemble report cards that would give regulators a new way to assess the companies and impose penalties when needed, the Portland Press Herald reported.

The commission held a public hearing on the rating system on Thursday. Phelps Turner, a lawyer with Conservation Law Foundation, said the commission should review past performance of the utilities as it starts the reviews, the Press Herald reported. Turner also said the companies should be compared with similar utilities in other states.

The largest utilities in the state are Central Maine Power and Versant Power. Both utilities said the rating system should not focus solely on penalties.