Owners of rented villas are nervously waiting to see their new tax bills, based on a Territory-wide reappraisal project that took more than a year. We’ve already seen properties whose assessment quintupled and, at best, face a property tax bill twice or there times what it has been.
Now comes another "gotcha". The electric company wants to raise rates 30%.
Remember the story about Tage having a $5,000 a month power bill? Well, how about another $1,500? How many more meals would the restaurant have had to serve to generate extra cash to pay that bill?
Villa owners face the same challenge. Stories about renters who turn on the a,.c,. and then leave the windows open while they take off for the beach are all too common. At our Blue Tang, with two air conditioned bedrooms, a $500 bill for one month is not out of the ordinary.
Homeowners and businesses are angry about WAPA’s push for this rate increase, especially since the utility’s directors also just approved a plan to begin hedging their purchases of the fuel oil their generators use. Is it conceivable they haven’t be doing this already? Airlines, manufacturers, other utility companies have hedged their needs for years, but WAPA’s just getting around to it – with oil at $92/barrel. Great!
The Virgin Islands Daily News has a story about the rate hike increase proposal here: http://www.virginislandsdailynews.com/index.pl/article_home?id=17617256