CUC emergency declaration extended, again

SENATE President Arnold I. Palacios, in his capacity as acting governor, has extended the declaration of the state of significant emergency for the Commonwealth Utilities Corp., saying it has no board yet and a technical-worker crisis exists.

To prevent a negative impact on services of which CUC is the sole supplier and provider, Palacios said he signed Executive Order 2017-07 to extend the declaration of the state of significant emergency for CUC.

It is hoped the declaration will ensure that CUC continues to function under its executive director, he added.

Palacios said the declaration also allows CUC “to be the recipient of an emergency replacement generator for Engine No. 8…by immediately effectuating a statutorily effective procurement in according with CNMI law to replace Engine No. 8 and enable CUC to operate at a substantially higher capacity.”

Palacios said he has been informed “by the management of power generation that there exists an ongoing immediate and pressing need for [a] replacement engine due to the existence of an extremely low powerreserve capacity on Saipan. Recently, CUC has seen that the reserve capacity for Saipan has dropped to less than 3 [megawatts] as a result of required scheduled maintenance of the power units.”

He said CUC “feels that minimum reserve capacity for Saipan should be equal to 40-50 percent of the peak demand for power. Currently, Saipan’s peak demand is approximately 41 MW. If any one of the large units at Power Unit 1 has to be taken out of service for scheduled maintenance or unscheduled repair work, Saipan’s power grid would be deficient in meeting the island’s power demands….”

The administration has been issuing emergency declarations for CUC since 2006.

Source: Marianas Variety :

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