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'Be patient with persons & not disconnect them' - Hon Vanterpool to BVIEC

- residents claimed they receive utility bills even though they were without electricity for months following the hurricanes of September 2017
Honourable Mark H. Vanterpool (R4), Minister for Communications and Works, stated that generators might have caused the high utility bills for some persons, while adding that he plans to meet with BVI Electricity Corporation (BVIEC) to rectify the problems. Photo: VINO
Residents throughout the territory have expressed that they are receiving utility bills for months that they were without electricity following the hurricanes of September 2017. Photo: VINO/File
Residents throughout the territory have expressed that they are receiving utility bills for months that they were without electricity following the hurricanes of September 2017. Photo: VINO/File
Electricity being restored throughout the territory. Photo: VINO/File
Electricity being restored throughout the territory. Photo: VINO/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – As the territory’s electricity infrastructure is being restored, a number of residents have reported receiving "high" utility bills for the months they were without power following the hurricanes of September 2017.

During the National Democratic Party's (NDP) radio programme, NDP Radio, on Monday, March 19, 2018 on ZBVI 780 AM, a female called in to voice her concerns about being billed for months she claimed she did not have electricity, adding that other tenants have been experiencing the same issue and wanted to know what is being done to rectify the problem.

She said, “I’m calling concerning the electricity. I’m a tenant in Tony Alphonso apartment and we didn’t have no current from since the hurricane and we got current on the 22nd of January. All the tenants receive a bill that is $1,000 and change and some are $800 and change. So we want to know, how we get this bill and we never had current?” while noting that BVI Electricity Corporation (BVIEC) is telling the tenants they have to pay the bill or they will be disconnected.

“Be patient with persons & not disconnect them” – Hon Vanterpool

In response, Honourable Mark H. Vanterpool (R4), Minister for Communications and Works, said he has set up a meeting with BVIEC to resolve the issue but pleaded with the corporation to be “patient with persons and not disconnect them”.

Hon Vanterpool commented, “You are one of many persons who have the same problem. I’ve been having a lot of questions like that from a lot of people. We are supposed to have a meeting to discuss the matter. However, as minister, I would ask the corporation to be patient with persons and not disconnect them and try to sort out how they are going to deal with it going forward.”

Meanwhile, one resident told our newsroom that his power was restored roughly in the middle of December 2017 and he received a bill of $600, expressing that he was “shocked” when he saw the bill.

He said, “I went to BVIEC and at first them was telling me I have to pay it but eventually they reduced the bill and I paid and went about my business. They were crazy if they thought I was going to pay that bill. I would have gone another three-plus month without that light. I hear other people having the same problem and they need to do something about it.”

Generators could have caused the spike in utility bills

Hon Vanterpool also explained that the generators that were being connected to individual's apartments might have contributed to the high utility bills.

“What happened was that people hooked up their generators to their houses during the aftermath of the storm and the generators were still self-turning the meters that were there and the electrical meter registered the cost. Now the BVIEC has to figure out and work out what the cost might have been since and what the cost was during that time.”

In addition, he pointed out that he does not want to give a definitive answer on what really is causing the spike in the utility bill until he meets with the BVIEC.

Hon Vanterpool emphasised, “That’s a discussion that we are going to be having. Right now I do not want to give a definitive answer until we meet and hopefully, after that, we can work out the situation and get things resolved.”

11 Responses to “'Be patient with persons & not disconnect them' - Hon Vanterpool to BVIEC”

  • yea (21/03/2018, 10:00) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
    I went to bviec every week for a bill and they don't have a bill for me and then come cut me off saying I have to pay my bill in full before they turn it back on that is bs
  • vi (21/03/2018, 10:04) Like (6) Dislike (36) Reply
    They need to hush their cheap a$$es and pay their bill. I received a $1200.00 bill for 3 months and I gladly paid it because I know the cost to restore electricity to the BVI cost millions of dollars. Anybody with common sense will just be happy their light has been restored and pay their bills. Electricity should just cut them off one time for non-payment. The Minister talking crap about be patient and don't cut them off. If they can buy a phone for over a thousand dollars every time a new version comes out, they should be able to pay their light which is a necessity for living.
    • wow (21/03/2018, 10:56) Like (11) Dislike (0) Reply
      not everyone has a job not everyone is buying phones people like you is why the place is the way it is not everyone got their jobs and are back to normal have some heart.
  • 40M ports over run (21/03/2018, 10:04) Like (0) Dislike (2) Reply
    well why don't MV pay he could afford it
  • There we go (21/03/2018, 10:44) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
    Handsout galore
  • yellow (21/03/2018, 11:24) Like (0) Dislike (2) Reply
    One day they bigging up the bviec the next day it's licks
  • Just Woke (21/03/2018, 12:33) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Politicians can talk as much ad they want these government workers still will do what they want. Nice though that Mark address the issue..
  • patiently waiting (21/03/2018, 14:12) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    Me only pet peeve is that BVIEC should be able to come up with a way to not charge people for something they didn't use. my bill was over 1300 dollars, I didn't get electricity until sometime in January. Regardless of how the generators were connected, it should not constitute in such high bills. This is adding insult to injury. I am waiting for the outcome. This is not fair.
  • Oh yeah (21/03/2018, 15:34) Like (12) Dislike (0) Reply
    Whether or the not the generator was connected the correct way the fact is the Electricity Corporation did not generate any electricity to consumers for a considerable period of time. This is like trying to get payment for work or services that was not rendered. They did not produce any electricity so they cannot be charging for it, that is fraud and stealing. Here is another thing if they still insisting on charging then they have to subtract the fuel charge because we is who payed for it. Mark really need to step in and correct this nonsense. A set of children running the Electricity Corporation.
  • @vi (21/03/2018, 17:31) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    You must be very idiotic to have paid $1200 for no current for 3 months. Noone I'm sure gets a bill that high unless they occupying office space where a/c is ran 24/7 or they forgot their iron plugged in and fridge door left open several days which I think is your case. Some even lost jobs and what's not but it sounds like you have money so you can clear yours with no questions asked lucky for you. Speak for yourself and not for others for you nearly sounding like a pompuss politician if you ask me
  • wow (22/03/2018, 16:37) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Hypocritical.


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