The House Committees on Judiciary and Governmental Operations and Public Utilities, Transportation and Communications will hold a joint oversight hearing on the secretive $190.8-million, 25-year power purchase agreement as early as next week.
JGO chair Rep. Ralph Demapan (Cov-Saipan) said Tuesday they are hoping to start calling in Commonwealth Utilities Corp. officials next week as part of the oversight hearing.
The oversight hearing follows the submission of documents to both the JGO and PUTC panels by CUC, the Office of the Attorney General, the Office of the Governor, and the Office of the Lt. Governor.
“We'll ask CUC about the substance of the contract and the analysis made on this agreement,” Demapan told reporters.
But he said his committee does not want to be in conflict with the schedules set by the budget conference committee.
“To me, passing a budget on time to prevent a government shutdown should be a priority right now. That's why we're trying to work around the schedules of the budget committee. We don't want to be in conflict with their schedule, but we're hoping to start the oversight hearing next week,” he added.
Unbeknownst to many, Gov. Benigno R. Fitial and former attorney general Edward T. Buckingham signed off on a 25-year power purchase agreement with Saipan Development LLC on Aug. 3.
SDLLC got a no-bid deal to build, operate, and sell power to CUC for 25 years.
This power purchase agreement is one of the subjects of an ongoing impeachment against Fitial.