27 Dec 2013

CNMI school system blames government for utility debt

4:33 pm on 27 December 2013

The Northern Marianas Public School System is blaming the government for not giving it enough money to pay for utilities, which has led to it owing more than six million US dollars to the Commonwealth Utilities Corporation.

The utility has recently filed a collective lawsuit against the school system, the territory's hospital, and the central government for unpaid bills amounting to more than 18 million dollars.

The commissioner of education, Dr Rita Sablan, says for many years the Public School System has been getting very limited funding for the electricity and water consumed at all 19 campuses on three islands.

Dr Sablan says at this point the system has no financial capability to pay the outstanding arrears and it blames lawmakers for continuously failing to provide an adequate budget to cover the schools' utility costs.