URCA Possibly To Regulate BEC

Monday 08th, October 2012 / 08:54 Published by

Amid recurring island-wide blackouts that have left thousands of consumers without electricity in New Providence, and a recent 25 percent reconnection fee increase, the Utilities Regulations and Competition Authority (URCA) said it is looking at the possibility of regulating and overseeing the Bahamas Electricity Company (BEC).

URCA’s Director of Policy and Regulation Stephen Bereaux said the regulatory body could take on additional sectors outside of electronic communications.

BEC reintroduced its reconnection fee on September 1 with a 25 percent increase from $20 to $25.

BEC’s Executive Chairman Leslie Miller said the corporation was forced to increase the fee in part because of the tens of thousands of dollars that were lost when the Ingraham administration waived the fee under its electricity assistance program in February.

He also said the increase was necessary to recoup $700,000 the former government paid out last year to contractors for electricity disconnection and reconnection exercises.

If the government owned electricity company was regulated by URCA it would mean that proposed price increases would require public consultation before being introduced.


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