Photo courtesy of Travelwithbrothers

PowerSource Philippines Inc. (PSPI) said it will continue to provide electricity to Barangay Port Barton in San Vicente despite the absence of a provisional authority from the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC).

PSPI site technical supervisor Joemar Divinagracia said Wednesday that the instruction given to them by the management is to continue operations. The company held a dialogue with the community on Tuesday to discuss its power rates, which have gone up because of the absence of government subsidies and the increased cost of fuel.

“Tuloy muna, walang interruption, walang shutdown na mangyayari,” he said.

He explained that they have not yet determined a definite rate as it is based on the fuel consumption of the power plant.

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Port Barton is one of the major travel destinations in the northern part of the province, and businesses are just starting to recover after the effects of the pandemic and typhoon Odette. Arcelita Scherer, one of the entrepreneurs, said their rate remains at P59 per kilowatt-hour.

“P59 pa rin rate, ewan ko anong gawin namin need, namin tulong sa ngayon,” she said.

“Rate now (is) 59. But depende pa rin sa takbo ng presyo ng petrolyo sa merkado. Kung taas, auto syempre taas sila. Pero sabi nila kahapon medyo mababa daw sa P59 ang magiging rate this coming month. Pero variable system charges, if tumaas fuel, taas din ang rate. If bumaba ang fuel baba rin ang rate,” PJ Acosta, resident, added.

It can be recalled that PSPI indicated in a letter dated March 7 that it would be temporarily closing its operation on April 7 due to a loss in revenue for three years. The company lost money because it didn’t get a provisional license from the ERC when it applied for an “Authority to Operate” (ATO) and a “QTP Service and Subsidy Contract” (QSSC).

In another letter from April 4, they said that if they could pay the full tariff they filed with the ERC, they would get 500 signatures from people in the community to let them keep running until May 31.

It was out for a long week before it was fixed on April 14. It affected more than 1,900 homes and businesses.

The provincial board also summoned the PSPI and the officials of the Palawan Electric Cooperative to discuss the problem in next week’s session.

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