CHCC, CUC ‘working’ on CHCC’s multi-million debt

The Commonwealth Health Care Corp. is grateful to the Commonwealth Utilities Corp. for “working” with CHCC on its multi-million debt in utilities billing.

In response to Saipan Tribune’s inquiry about CHCC’s debt to CUC, CHCC spokesperson Zoe Travis said they are thankful to CUC for allowing them to continue to provide medical services to the community during a time that is financially difficult for all.

Travis did not provide details of CHCC’s debt to CUC and what CHCC is doing to pay its outstanding bills.

“We feel this is something that has been discussed at length and do not have any updates to provide,” she said.

Last May, acting CUC board chair Weston Deleon Guerrero said CUC should take court action against CHCC and have the court decide about CHCC’s failure to pay its utilities debt, now at over $27 million.

Deleon Guerrero brought up the idea for the court to intervene for CUC to collect the money when CUC executive director Gary P. Camacho discussed during a board meeting CHCC’s failure to pay $400,000 in monthly bills or over $27 million.

Deleon Guerrero pointed out that CHCC’s rates make sure that they pay their doctors and pay all the salaries of their staff. In that rate, Deleon Guerrero noted, CHCC is stating that they put in a utility rate as part of their overall rate.

Last April, Camacho said that, according to CHCC, the $71,000 is all that they can afford to pay at this time because of other obligations that they must meet.

Last March, CUC reported that CHCC owes the utilities agency $27,412,615, with its past due at four years. Last April, the debt reached $27.7 million.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a veteran journalist who has covered all news beats in the CNMI. Born in Lilo-an, Cebu City in the Philippines, De la Torre graduated from the University of Santo Tomas with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He is a recipient of many commendations and awards, including the CNMI Judiciary’s prestigious Justice Award for his over 10 years of reporting on the judiciary’s proceedings and decisions. Contact him at ferdie_delatorre@saipantribune.com

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