Electricity costs spark Cruz Bay protest


The high cost of electricity on St. John generated a protest demonstration in Cruz Bay.  Almost 50 people carried signs and picketed outside the Legislature and police department buildings to complain about the Water and Power Authority's rates and its use of oil to generate electricity.  Some say they have to choose whether to pay the power bill or rent.

The St. John Source quoted Gary Ray, a local, saying the cost of a kilowatt hour on the island is 47 cents, compared to 12 cents on the mainland.  Another man said his bill is $400 a month and he doesn't have air conditioning to blame for the high expense. Villa owners report monthly electricity costs of $350 to $900.

The owner of Baked in the Sun, K. O. Joseph, told the Source her monthly electric bill is $3,800.  "How much can you pay for a bagel?", pointing our she doesn't have many options to raise prices.

One protester pointed out that several government agencies owe WAPA tens of thousands of dollars.  "If I don't pay my bill, I'm turned off," Gary Emmons told the Source.

3 thoughts on “Electricity costs spark Cruz Bay protest”

  1. But, then, without exhorbitant WAPA costs, how do we make all government and utility employees millionaires in their retirment? Everyone has a right to an easy life, good pay, all the benefits, and unqualified management/administration has a right to obscene salaries and lifetime benefits. So how do the rates get lowered and still maintain the self serving “prime directive” of the Virgin Islands government and quasi governmental organizations like WAPA?

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