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CUC: Demand for power down by almost 25%

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AMID a steep decline in tourist arrivals that has resulted in an economic slowdown, the Commonwealth Utilities Corp. has been seeing a drop of almost 25% in overall demand for power since last month, CUC Executive Director Gary Camacho said.

Overall demand used to average 42 megawatts a month, but now peak demand is down to 32 megawatts, he added.

CUC’s revenue, especially from its commercial accounts, has been negatively affected, Camacho said.

He added that some business establishments have closed shop while others have reduced their operating hours.

“It is a huge impact on CUC,” he said, but added that the utilities corporation will continue to maintain a high level of service to its customers.

As for the government, Camacho said CUC received last year an initial payment of $388,000 from the central government.

“We are working closely with the secretary of Finance and the governor,” he said.

Camacho noted that the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp. has yet to pay since last year.

As of Friday, Camacho said the central government’s unpaid utility bills amounted to $10 million while CHCC’s was $34 million.

He said CUC needs to get paid regularly to purchase oil for the power engines as well as parts and other items needed to sustain power plant operations.

Camacho didn’t mention a specific amount, but he said CUC is also still waiting for some reimbursements from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for the damage caused by Super Typhoon Yutu in Oct. 2018.

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