Consultant warns on St. John ferry finances

Ferry A consultant for the V.I. Public Service Commission has raised the spectre that one of the two ferry companies may not make it.

In a report about the findings of Avery Williams of Dumfries, Va., the St. John Source quoted him saying that while Transportation Services (TS) should have a positive cash flow, it is strapped for money.  “There is a serious concern as to whether (the company) has the ability to remain a going concern,” he told the PSC, the Source reported.

The ferry company, one of two which runs routes between Cruz Bay and Red Hook and Charlotte Amalie, is being forced to repay tax money it withheld in favor of making loan payments.  TS ‘deferred’ paying gross receipts, VI withholding taxes and, Social Security contributions.

The other ferry company, Varlack Ventures, appears in good shape.  The consultant found that the current ferry fees appear to be sufficient for the companies to earn 6-10% a year.  The companies do not appear to need government subsidies, he said, according to the Source.

Williams, the consultant, was however not satisfied with the new electronic ticketing system.  He said there are insufficient controls in the system.

  • Transportation Services may not have lots of money, but it does have a Facebook page.
  • Read the full Source story here … and you should check the Source daily, too – it’s a great effort by Shaun Pennington, Lynda Lohr, and several other dedicated, thorough, professional journalists.)

1 thought on “Consultant warns on St. John ferry finances”

  1. Cash loans to insiders that don’t get paid back, strictly cash business – not surprising. Throw in the V.I. and Federal subsidies and you just have to wonder.

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