Archive for wapa

Big Kahuna

WAPA To Raise Prices…

This is just the beginning folks.

From the St. Thomas Source: For electricity customers, WAPA is asking for a base rate increase between 2.75 and 3 cents per kilowatt hour. A customer consuming the average residential monthly usage of 500 kilowatt hours, will see their bills increase about $11 to $13 dollars, very slightly offset by a very slight decrease in the LEAC, Boschulte said.

Read the full story here

I don’t know about you but I don’t think the average is 500 kilowatt hours per month? And what about those poor businesses that use 5000 Kwh’s a month, that’s a $150/month increase.

With the increase it will bring our residential rates from .44 to .47 kWh. We’ll be at .50 by July once they re-adjust the LEAC rates because fuel is going up through the roof.

Buckle down people.

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Big Kahuna

The Choke Hold On St. Thomas

Fuel.

Have you been listening to the news lately regarding gas prices? They’re going up and fast, we’ve had a .56 cent increase on the price of regular since January 1st. We typically average $1/gallon more than the stateside average. And they’re talking about seeing  $5/ gallon in the states. Can you imagine paying $6/gallon here?

What’s that mean for St. Thomas?

Everything and I mean everything goes up in price. It will cost more to ship stuff in which means a rise in food costs, products and the nail in the coffin….The LEAC. Add that to the fact that our only fuel supplier Hovensa will be done with us in June and to date a new supplier has not even been mentioned.

We pretty much live and die with fuel costs. Can you imagine the LEAC skyrocketing to over .50/kWh? Right now we’re paying .44/kWh, imagine paying say .54/kWh? What would a .10 rise mean to you? People can’t even pay the ridiculous .44 we’re paying now. If the average household uses 1000/kWh a month that would mean the average electricity bill at .54/kWh would be $540/month. Ouch.

My gas tank holds 18 gallons and I fill it once a week, sometimes twice. A dollar/gallon alone would add $72/month to my gas bill, double that as we have 2 cars so roughly $150/month just in gas increases. Then you’ll see a rise at all the grocery stores for the fuel increase and then again if the LEAC goes up.

Maybe none of this will happen, we can only hope. But if it does are you prepared?  What are your thoughts?

 

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Big Kahuna

Complain All You Want – No Water For You!

For over 40 days and 40 nights WAPA has been rationing water to homes and businesses. Some businesses have had to close, money down the drain if only they could actually flush their toilet.

But tomorrow, there will be no water…..at all. In St. Thomas or St. John on a 5 ship day.

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There’s nothing more to say, the people are once again made to suffer at our government’s expense.

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Big Kahuna

THIS IS IT! PROTEST WAPA LEAC & THE GOVERNMENT!

You’ve all complained about WAPA and the Government here in the US Virgin Islands. Last week a small group of us started a movement called ALL AH WE – PROTEST WAPA and we’re ready to roll on ALL 3 islands. Here are the details:

PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CLICK ON THE PICTURE, PRINT IT OUT AND STAPLE IT TO YOUR PROTEST SIGN.

Here are the core objectives of the protest:

1. Subsidize LEAC by 50% with a cap at .20 kwh

2. Government to pay all WAPA bills owed just like their citizens

3. Transparency of LEAC charges broken down for consumers to understand

4. Replace WAPA board with competent experienced persons from the field of energy, renewable energy, engineers, professors, business leaders etc.

5. Break up the Public Services Commission into two voting groups to consist of a group that solely protects consumers and a group that solely protects the utilities so as to not have a conflict of interest.

6. Vote out any Senator or Governor not willing to keep LEAC below .20 kwh

You can also use this flyer to pass out to businesses, churches and other locations if you don’t like the flyers above:

PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CLICK ON THE PICTURE, PRINT IT OUT AND STAPLE IT TO YOUR PROTEST SIGN.

The government doesn’t pay their WAPA bills to the tune of $15-$20 million but yet we get shut off within 50 days of being late. Furthermore their debt gets added into our LEAC charges. Wonder why our LEAC is so high?

Businesses are closing at an alarming rate because their power bills are more than their rent and payroll combined.

People like you and me struggle to conserve energy, using fans instead of AC sitting in puddles of sweat while all Government buildings are ice cold. Have you seen the women wearing jackets in these government buildings because they are COLD?

What used to be a $200 power bill is now a $400 power bill.

Have you lost any appliances or flat screen TV’s lately? WAPA doesn’t care!

Come out and join us Wednesday the 9th at 10am. If you’re working come during your lunch break or take off work if you can. Or swing by after work.

We have the chance to protest on 3 islands and make our voices heard.

It’s up to you!


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Big Kahuna

Our Senators Bailout Our Hospitals But Leave It’s Citizens Holding A Live Wire

The Juan F. Luis Hospital (JFL) on St. Croix owes about $50 million and Schneider owes some unknown number, let’s hypothetically say 20 million just for giggles.

The amendment to bailout these hospitals was proposed by Sens. Ronald Russell and Carlton “Ital” Dowe and approved during the session. It now goes to Gov. John deJongh Jr. for approval.

Awesome.

But yet the people of the Virgin islands are drowning in WAPA LEAC charges to the tune of .36 kwh. Power bills that are up to 6 times that of the states.

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The citizens of the USVI are paying over .46 kwh for electricity (yet the government doesn’t pay it’s own WAPA bill). If the average home uses 1200 kwh a month that’s $552 on average. Businesses are getting killed, little tiny pizza joints are paying over $5000/month. And it’s no wonder a pizza cost between $22-$37 here.

We need a bailout. We need a bailout from LEAC. It’s time to make the move and join the Protest Wapa Group and march: http://www.facebook.com/protestwapa.

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Big Kahuna

Protest WAPA Begins

We’ve had enough. It’s time to take to the streets and make a difference.

Please join the Facebook Page PROTEST WAPA: http://www.facebook.com/ProtestWAPA

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Big Kahuna

A WAPA Movement

And I don’t mean a big crap on WAPA.

I mean could we, as citizens, develop a serious protest against WAPA and the Government in response for being abused with ridiculously high electric prices and lack of service? I mean could the people rally and really do something?

Or do we continue just to take it and complain on the sidelines?

THIS IS YOUR CHANCE TO START SOMETHING AND MAKE IT A NATIONAL ISSUE.

Join the PROTEST WAPA FACEBOOK PAGE HERE: http://www.facebook.com/ProtestWAPA

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Big Kahuna

WAPA Destroying Our Economy – Sign The Petition

The exorbitant electric bills of the residents and business of the US Virgin Islands is destroying our economy. Businesses are already closing because they cannot afford to pay their electric bill and stay in business.

(Click the photo to sign the petition)

When businesses close that means lost jobs, wages and taxes.

We need action now.

The exorbitant bills that businesses and consumers pay for their electricity is obscene and is going to destroy our economy. It is time to stop the feasibility studies and just hook up to Puerto Rico’s power grid.

(Click the photo to sign the petition)

We need 1,000 signatures
There are currently 763 signatures

Signer Date Place
763. Scott White Sep 30, 2011 Saint Thomas
762. luz D sierra Sep 30, 2011
761. Sunita totwani Sep 30, 2011 St Thomas, VI
760. Leigh Goldman Sep 30, 2011 St Thomas

They have single handedly stifled the economy. It’s like a massive imposition of taxes without any benefit. Break this monopoly and let competing producers into the market. Also, have Senate relax the laws on co-production so eco friendly innovators, like four winds plaza can have their windmills on.

759. Donovan Carroll Sep 30, 2011 St Thomas, VI
758. Deanna Sep 30, 2011 St John, VI

It has to stop – your greed will kill our economy

757. Donna Wheeler Sep 30, 2011 Andover, MN

Moved in part due to WAPA charges – it affects all cost of living – grocery bills high due to WAPA bills, everything high. It has to change.

756. Helen Sidiropoulos Sep 30, 2011
755. William T. Jacobs Sep 30, 2011 St Croix, VI, VI

Everybody make sure to tell WAPA about themselves on twitter too ==> @WAPA_USVI

754. Kurt schindler Sep 30, 2011 St Croix, VI

Never seen St. Croix’s economy doing so poorly. 40 year banya. Time to push solar!

(Click the photo to sign the petition)

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Big Kahuna

Why Your WAPA Bills Are So High

Frustration over recent increases in local utility bills fueled the Senate’s discussion last Tuesday with V.I. Water and Power Authority officials, who appeared before the Finance Committee to explain their fiscal year 2012 budget.

While the authority does not receive any money from the General Fund for expenses, WAPA officials still come before the Senate each year to discuss their projected costs, highlight their accomplishments and generally spend hours explaining the mathematics behind Levelized Energy Adjustment Clause (LEAC) rates and why they are so high.

While this year was no exception, WAPA was given a reprieve by Sen. Alicia “Chucky” Hansen, who suggested the focus of residents’ frustrations — are at least part of it — be turned to Hovensa. The refinery has an agreement to charge WAPA below market price for fuel but won’t let anyone “look at the books,” so there’s no real way of telling whether the authority is paying more than they should, Hansen said.

WAPA Executive Director Hugo Hodge Jr. said that the authority’s fuel expenses are being calculated in accordance with the agreement — now on its third revision — but added that he has spoken to the governor about intervening with Hovensa on WAPA’s behalf. Fuel costs are usually at least three-fourths of the authority’s budget and are expected to total nearly $266 million in FY 2012, Hodge said.

READ THE FULL STORY HERE

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Big Kahuna

THE WAPA RANT

Q. If a car hits a telephone pole in the dark of night how many residents lose power?

A. The entire island of St. Thomas. And most of St. John.

Impressive. WAPA must be pretty fragile if one accident brought down the entire, archaic system. This accident occurred just before 1am on Wednesday morning…and we all know that because that would be the moment fans and a/c units shut off, smoke alarms beeped and died, cell phones stopped charging, clocks and alarms were silenced, bedrooms and homes heated up immediately from the humidity, refrigerators stopped refrigerating and people started relying on camping skills to take care of basic hygiene.

What’s more impressive is that the power is still questionable as of, apparently, 8:30-ish this morning when it clicked off yet again. As we were writing this article. So ironic. And so disgusting. From one car accident. Wow.

Here’s what that means to tourists renting villas this week. You’ve been sweating your nuts off lying in bed trying to sleep but can’t because the sweat is rolling down your face and back. Oh and all that food you bought is rotten now. Did you rent a villa with a generator? I hope so. I also hope you have many cans of mosquito spray as they have a knack of slipping through tiny screen holes and making your life even more miserable. (Although you could pass around those zapping little racket things and make a drinking game out of who can kill the most…and you better start drinking because the beer in the fridge is getting warmer and warmer)

Let’s not forget restaurants without generators and heaps of food getting wasted and money going down the drain. Bakeries that are dealing with ovens that keep clicking on and off as they play the game of, ‘Are we on WAPA or generator power right now?’

As locals we have to put up with this complete bullshit regularly, and it’s never going change. Ever. We will always be a 3rd world little island because our government doesn’t want to bring in professionals. You know, the sort of people that run this crap right from the good ole U.S.A.

Here’s what the complete morons at WAPA had to say:

“It has spiraled into other issues,” WAPA spokeswoman Lynette Moreland said, when asked Thursday evening why rotating power outages continued more than 24 hours after a single utility pole was damaged. The precise causes are very technical, but the surge that occurred at the time of the accident caused feedback, which cause the feeder to go out, which then triggered the rotating outages, she said.

The precise causes are very technical huh…let me translate:

We don’t know what the problem is because we are so poorly run and mismanaged that we can barely function to begin with. Couple that with a system made for the 1930′s and you get a power outage that affects two islands from one power pole being hit.

Sorry I may have embellished a wee bit.

Moreland then referred technical details to WAPA Chief Operating Officer Greg Rhymer, who could not be reached for comment. As to when things might return to normal, “hopefully it will end today,” Moreland said.

And the buck is passed.

WAPA Executive Director Hugo Hodge Jr. is paid more than our governor, as was noted in this article from a year ago tomorrow that made most of the island gag when the WAPA board announced his FORTY PERCENT RAISE bringing his salary from a measly $150,000 to $210,000.

WAPA just increased our bills two days ago. From the VI Daily News article announcing the increase I offer the amusing first line, “After a two-hour meeting that put V.I. Water and Power Authority officials in the hot seat about their service’s reliability, quality and cost, the V.I. Public Services Commission on Tuesday approved increases to the water and power LEAC.” That’s sort of like a parent admonishing their candy-loving, non-tooth-brushing child for not taking care of their teeth but then softening and ending the argument with a rewarding pile of candy, no?

For more on the increase please click here.

For more technical gobbledy-gook on how one pole can screw the power for three days please click here.

…for all the well-meaning WAPA workers that are stuck sweating in the humid air while trying to fix the problems caused by those above you…thank you…


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