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(Monday, July 10, 2017)

The governing board of the Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority Monday approved bond anticipation notes of up to $85 million; Fiscal Year 2016 Electric and Water Systems Audited Financial Statements and the formalizing of agreements with three contractors to assist WAPA in the aftermath of a hurricane or other natural disaster. The board’s unanimous approval of all items came at an emergency meeting held on St. Thomas.

Executive Director Julio A. Rhymer, Sr. said the resolution’s approval is for Bond Anticipation Notes up to $85 million with a maximum maturity of up to three years from date of issuance. “The Authority signed a contract with Wartsila North America for the purchase of three new generating units. Financing is required to fund costs associated with the acquisition, construction and installation of these new units to improve efficiency,” Rhymer said. The new units will foster the implementation of the Integrated Resource Plan and the Authority’s Strategic Plan of producing more efficient energy at an affordable price. The three units are the first installment of several additional generators WAPA will bring on line over the next several years to increase efficiency and reliability at its two power plants.

In other action, Rhymer told the board that additional manpower and other resources are required to supplement the Authority’s personnel, to ensure a safe and expedited restoration of electrical service after a hurricane or other natural disaster impacts the Authority’s, transmission and distribution systems. “The agreements with the emergency response contractors will assist WAPA with restoration of service after a windstorm or other natural disaster.” The board approved WAPA negotiating agreements with three companies: BBC Electrical Services, Inc., Sumter Utilities and Service Electric.

The board also approved 2016 Electric and Water Systems Audited Financial statements allowing WAPA to issue debt and provide financial information to the investment community.

Board members in attendance included chairwoman Elizabeth Armstrong, Vice Chairman Noel Loftus, Commissioner Devin Carrington, Director Marvin Pickerting, Gerald T. Groner, Esq., Cheryl Boynes Jackson and Hubert Turnbull. Commissioner Gustav James and Board Secretary Juanita Young were excused.