CNMI utility not helped by government

5:01 pm on 27 May 2015

The utilitiy provider in the Northern Marianas has released its quarterly report suggesting it is hamstrung by the local government.

The Marianas Variety says the government cannot pay its utility bills, enacts laws that reduce the Commonwealth Utilities Corporation's revenue while also preventing it from imposing rate hikes.

The report says if this doesn't change, CUC may collapse or run out of money.

The report notes that CUC continues to struggle financially due to account receivables of $32 million US dollars, which includes the government's $30 million in unpaid utility bills.

In the first half of fiscal year the government paid less than 59 percent of their bills.

The report also says in recent years the Legislature enacted measures affecting utility rates, reducing revenue by 5.7 million or 12 percent of CUC's operating budget:

There is also pending legislation that would transfer financial responsibility for streetlights to CUC, resulting in an additional $2 million loss if passed.

CNMI Legislature

CNMI Legislature Photo: Supplied