STO Expansion: What the hell?

I’ve complained about Star Trek Online before, so this won’t surprise you too much.  I’ve gotten hours of enjoyment from STO so I’m not devastated about the limits that have been imposed on my characters for the last the years. There has been a steady flow of new content for the last two years so I haven’t had much to complain about because there was frequently something new to do.
Then a few weeks ago, they started hinting at something big coming in May. The rumor sites were predicting that this would be a large new featured episode, but instead Cryptic/Perfect World announced the first expansion for the game. The biggest thing that is being added to the game in the expansion is something that has been rumored to be in the works for years, since the beginning in fact: the addition of a third faction lead by the Romulans.
That’s great and all, but something significant is missing: there’s no level call increase.
I know that I’m probably overstating this issue, but my main character has been level 50 since June 2010. There’s been no way to really increase my character’s abilities since then, though I’ve been able to get new ships, weapons, equipment and personnel. My character is effectively stagnant, and that has had a major impact on my desire to play the game. Sure there’s plenty to do but it’s all busy work or repetition if I do it on one of my other characters. The only hope for advancement and intrigue is on the Klingon faction which I have barely used. So I’ll have another option with the Romulans. But once I hit level 50, I’m stuck again.
There’s been no level cap increase that I’m aware of since the game left beta shortly before it was released. Why not? I don’t have a clue. Blizzard has increased the level call in World of Warcraft multiple times, sometimes by 10 levels, others by 5, but they realize the importance of character advancement to retaining player interest. EA/Bioware even sees the importance of character advancement to Star Wars: The Old Republic with their first expansion pack, advancing a modest 5 levels, but at least it’s there.
The failure to increase the level cap leaves me speechless. Perhaps the game was never designed to go past level 50. I’ve heard of games where critical problems would occur if the character exceeded a certain level, because math was foolishly based on the level or an algorithm depended on a lookup table that was only extended to a certain point. One of my favorite games of all time had such a flaw: SSI’s classic gold box D&D game Curse of the Azure Bonds. Of course that game is nearly 30 years old now, but maybe increasing the cap would break the already seriously strained and tenuous connection that the two game engines in STO already struggle to view with. Maybe not.
I just can’t believe that they would think that adding new content alone would be something to keep longtime and lifetime members interested in the game. After all, they’ve been giving us new content on a regular basis for years. Why would we get excited over something we’ve expected for years in light of the regular content updates. Let us advance, keep the Romulans for all I care.