Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Puerto Rico fiscal board will revise energy regulator’s budget

By on August 10, 2018

PREC holds a hearing in November 2017 to investigate Prepa’s August rate hike. (Agustín Criollo/CB)

SAN JUAN – The Financial Oversight and Management Board (FOMB) will be taking a second look at the Puerto Rico Energy Commission’s (PREC) budget.

The decision was made after the energy regulator complained that its revenues were cut by 70%. The fiscal board limited PREC’s expenditures to $1.8 million, of which $1.6 million is for payroll and expenses and $207,000 for operational expenses.

PREC gets its budget from two sources. The first is a $5.8 million yearly allocation from Prepa and the second is from a fee charged to private power companies that does not exceed 0.25%, suggesting the allocated budget is in violation of PREC’s charter law.

“If not amended, the Consolidated Budget established by the FOMB, will end the independent, fact-based regulation of Puerto Rico’s electric industry,” the commissioners said in a letter to the fiscal board.

After reviewing the letter, the board agreed with PREC’s budget analysis.

By Aug. 20, the board said, the governor will submit a revised budget, which will be considered approved if it complies with the fiscal plan.

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