By Baltimore Business Journal

Marylandâ¿¿s energy regulators are looking for an assist.

The stateâ¿¿s Public Service Commission is asking the state to spend nearly $1.2 million to hire two out-of-state consulting firms to help it review the potential impact the proposed sale of Baltimoreâ¿¿s Constellation Energy Group Inc. to Exelon Corp. of Chicago could have on the local energy market.

The PSC plans to spend nearly $1 million of the total on Overland Consulting of Kansas. The company, which previously helped the state review Constellationâ¿¿s 2009 nuclear energy deal with EDF Group, will help Marylandâ¿¿s energy regulators evaluate the proposed dealâ¿¿s impact on Constellationâ¿¿s employment, community investment and charitable contributions in the state.

Overland also will consider the potential impact of the pending $7.9 billion sale on rates paid by customers of Constellation subsidiary Baltimore Gas and Electric Co.

For $280,700, Bates White Economic Consulting, which has offices in San Diego and Washington, D.C., will analyze the proposed dealâ¿¿s impact on the production of power and whether wholesale prices of that energy could increase.

The stateâ¿¿s Board of Public Works will vote on both contracts at its Oct. 5 meeting in Annapolis. If approved, the contracts expire in July 2013. They are expected to be approved.

Meanwhile, Constellation (NYSE: CEG) and Exelon (NYSE: EXC) continue to work toward a merger, despite recent opposition by the stateâ¿¿s energy administration.

The PSC will begin holding its evidentiary hearings Oct. 31. Three more public hearings will be held in November and December.

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