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Senator asks utility commission to lower power, water rates

Sen. Ridgell is asking utility officials to lower water and power rates for customers as soon as possible in light of the public health emergency our island faces and in light of the recent worldwide decline in oil prices. In recent news, the price of oil has plummeted, even into negative territory. As Guam’s power supply is mostly provided by oil, Ridgell has urged the utilities to capitalize on these lower fuel costs and pass off that cost to its customers as soon as possible. “The lion's share of your power bill is due to the cost of fuel,” Ridgell said in a letter to the Consolidated Commission on Utilities. “Fuel prices have fallen drastically, which means the cost to produce power should fall drastically as well. The cost of power is also a major cost for the production of water. Power is required to pump water throughout the island. If the cost of fuel has gone down, so should the cost of power and thus so should the cost of water.” ADVERTISEMENT

Commissioner Simon Sanchez said he foresees discussing reducing the fuel surcharge further in May. “This is good news, and I encourage them to move on this as quickly as possible. I would like to see them consider this reduction sooner, if possible. I would like to urge that this surcharge rate reduction be discussed at the CCU meeting next week and acted upon by the PUC promptly, in light of the emergency situations in Guam’s public health and economy.”

This is with the recognition that this public health emergency has been difficult for many island residents, financially. “It is of the utmost importance that we do everything we can as public servants to help the people of Guam remain afloat financially and I look forward to continuing to work with (the utilities) on this and other important matters," Ridgel said.

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