Brownout looms anew over Rinconada area


IRIGA CITY— Another disconnection notice threatens to cut the power supply in the Rinconada area.

The district, which has just emerged from a week-long power outtage, currently has an unpaid debt amounting to P3 million pesos per day from its supplier, San Miguel Electric Cooperative (SMEC).

Yesterday, representatives from CASURECO III, SMEC, the National Electrification Administration (NEA), as well as Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Jericho Petilla met at Malacanang Palace to discuss the issue. Said parties reached an agreement that allows CASURECO III to settle its debt until February 2014. If the debt remains unpaid, according to the agreement, the power supply will once again be cut off, and NEA would be forced to take over the electric cooperative.

CASURECO III is mulling the possibility of applying for a P50 million loan from NEA to add to the amount it needs to collect to pay off its massive debt.

Last week, around 66,000 consumers of the electric cooperative suffered a brownout after CASURECO III failed to pay its bills for the previous month. Said consumers are residents of the towns of Bula, Baao, Balatan, Bato, Nabua, Buhi and the city of Iriga in this province.

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