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Charlotte Amalie
Saturday, July 2, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesBIDS NEEDED BEFORE WAPA IS SOLD (OR NOT)

BIDS NEEDED BEFORE WAPA IS SOLD (OR NOT)

It is baffling to think that the Virgin Islands government and the Water And Power Authority need to be taken to court to do what is common sense and good business. When seeking to sell an item, one should get more than one bid.
If the government is contemplating selling WAPA, it should solicit competitive bids. Upon receipt, they should be evaluated as to adequacy and overall price. The best offer should then be evaluated relative to retaining ownership — in other words, compare the costs and benefits of selling at the best offer versus continuing to operating WAPA as is, taking into consideration that if the government continues to operate WAPA, the government must pay its WAPA bills in order that WAPA may operate properly. (Approximately $35 million is past due in government amounts owed.)
If the decision is made to sell, then the proceeds must be earmarked for economical, productive purposes — not merely to meet payroll! You cannot sell a capital investment to meet operating expenses. I would suggest the money be spent to improve the St. Croix economic infrastructure: to build a homeport facility, to help finance the construction of a major hotel, to support homeporting and to expand the container port to stimulate transshipping and the homeport industry, as well as to build a financial center with a first-rate communication system to attract financial companies.
Such wise investment will strengthen the economy of the whole Virgin Islands, which in turn will generate more government revenues.
Michael Bornn
Editor's note: Michael Bornn is an investment counselor and frequent Source contributor.

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It is baffling to think that the Virgin Islands government and the Water And Power Authority need to be taken to court to do what is common sense and good business. When seeking to sell an item, one should get more than one bid.
If the government is contemplating selling WAPA, it should solicit competitive bids. Upon receipt, they should be evaluated as to adequacy and overall price. The best offer should then be evaluated relative to retaining ownership -- in other words, compare the costs and benefits of selling at the best offer versus continuing to operating WAPA as is, taking into consideration that if the government continues to operate WAPA, the government must pay its WAPA bills in order that WAPA may operate properly. (Approximately $35 million is past due in government amounts owed.)
If the decision is made to sell, then the proceeds must be earmarked for economical, productive purposes -- not merely to meet payroll! You cannot sell a capital investment to meet operating expenses. I would suggest the money be spent to improve the St. Croix economic infrastructure: to build a homeport facility, to help finance the construction of a major hotel, to support homeporting and to expand the container port to stimulate transshipping and the homeport industry, as well as to build a financial center with a first-rate communication system to attract financial companies.
Such wise investment will strengthen the economy of the whole Virgin Islands, which in turn will generate more government revenues.
Michael Bornn
Editor's note: Michael Bornn is an investment counselor and frequent Source contributor.