PSE&G crews trim trees along Searingtown Road, just south of...

PSE&G crews trim trees along Searingtown Road, just south of I.U. Willets Road in Albertson. (Jan. 2, 2014) Credit: Newsday / Audrey C. Tiernan

PSEG Long Island passed a test with Friday's snowstorm, though it was more of an open-book quiz than a tough final.

The Long Island Power Authority passed a more important test recently when the IRS agreed that LIPA still deserves tax-exempt status. PSEG took over the power delivery duties of National Grid, along with many managerial duties of LIPA, on Wednesday.

The shrinking of LIPA came after outrage at the utility's poor response to Sandy. Some had called for full municipalization of LIPA, and that faction pushed the IRS to refuse the tax-exempt status. That would have cost LIPA its ability to issue tax-free bonds and receive federal aid after storms. This ruling should silence critics and allow LIPA and PSEG to focus on reliable power, reasonable rates, and, of course, storm response.

The next "blizzard" test may not be so easy.

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