Many of the projects the Commonwealth Utilities Corp. is currently undertaking are part of what CUC is doing to reduce rates for the community, according to board chair David Sablan Jr.
He stated this in response to Guam Sen. James V. Espaldon, who was present in CUC’s board meeting last Wednesday and had asked what CUC is currently doing to reduce its rates.
Espaldon, who spoke during the public commentary part of the meeting, said he had been attending CUC’s board meetings over the years but never hears CUC talk about how to reduce its rates.
Sablan, after a brief break, told Saipan Tribune that CUC has been discussing rate reduction at every board meeting they’ve had.
“Because that is our objective and what we’re focusing on so whatever we do, it is related to reducing its rates,” Sablan said.
Sablan said that they are fully aware of the ways that CUC is trying to reduce utility rates.
“It is happening now because of the oil we pay. We’re looking also at the savings noted by several of our divisions in CUC,” he said.
He said many of the projects being undertaken by CUC are ways of reducing its rates. One way is having more efficient engines to produce more power for less oil. Another is the Integrated Resource Plan being undertaken by Leidos Engineering LLC, which is looking for proposers for better and efficient energy system for CUC.
“Once the board approves the Integrated Resource Plan, that will become the ‘bible’ for the agency and will require CUC to follow. So if anyone who wants to come to us and propose some system of generating electricity and if it is within the plan, we’ll be willing to talk about it,” Sablan said.
Other projects include addressing the federal stipulated orders, geothermal finding, solar finding, commercial incentive tariff for large commercial customers to fulfill its grid system needs, and soon-to-be collection of past government arrears.
“So we’re expecting the Integrated Resource Plan soon and it will be this year and have better cost-effectiveness and I think that there will be some great saving comings for the people of the CNMI,” Sablan said.