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PSC Will Look at Vitelco, Legal Issues

Oct. 27, 2007 — The Public Services Commission will look at the state of affairs at Vitelco telephone company in a meeting 10 a.m. Wednesday at the V.I. Port Authority conference room in the Henry Rohlsen Airport on St. Croix.
After opening the meeting, the PSC plans to close its doors for an executive session to discuss pending legal matters. Once the meeting opens to the public again, two reports are on the agenda: a status report on capital and long-range planning, and a status report and discussion of telephone operations and finances.
Both reports are made more pressing by the ongoing Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings affecting Vitelco’s parent company, Innovative Communications. Vitelco itself is not in bankruptcy, only the parent company, ICC. The financial troubles of the parent company have affected Vitelco, however. Millions of dollars are currently due to Vitelco and other ICC pension funds. (See "Pension Shortfall for Prosser Companies More Than Previously Reported.") And in April, alarms were raised when Vitelco missed a major dividend payment, citing concerns about meeting payroll. (See "Late Vitelco Dividend Payment Raises Concerns Over Phone Company's Finances.")
Aside from the problems with the pension fund and missed dividend payment, there appear to be a number of unusual financial arrangements at ICC that could affect the subsidiary utilities. (See "Trustee: Prosser Bought $9 Million in Luxury Goods with ICC Funds.")
Wednesday’s hearing will be the first open meeting to address Vitelco financial matters since early March of this year. It is also the first meeting under new PSC Chairman Joseph Boschulte. (See "PSC Replaces Wells as Chairwoman.")
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Oct. 27, 2007 -- The Public Services Commission will look at the state of affairs at Vitelco telephone company in a meeting 10 a.m. Wednesday at the V.I. Port Authority conference room in the Henry Rohlsen Airport on St. Croix.
After opening the meeting, the PSC plans to close its doors for an executive session to discuss pending legal matters. Once the meeting opens to the public again, two reports are on the agenda: a status report on capital and long-range planning, and a status report and discussion of telephone operations and finances.
Both reports are made more pressing by the ongoing Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings affecting Vitelco’s parent company, Innovative Communications. Vitelco itself is not in bankruptcy, only the parent company, ICC. The financial troubles of the parent company have affected Vitelco, however. Millions of dollars are currently due to Vitelco and other ICC pension funds. (See "Pension Shortfall for Prosser Companies More Than Previously Reported.") And in April, alarms were raised when Vitelco missed a major dividend payment, citing concerns about meeting payroll. (See "Late Vitelco Dividend Payment Raises Concerns Over Phone Company's Finances.")
Aside from the problems with the pension fund and missed dividend payment, there appear to be a number of unusual financial arrangements at ICC that could affect the subsidiary utilities. (See "Trustee: Prosser Bought $9 Million in Luxury Goods with ICC Funds.")
Wednesday’s hearing will be the first open meeting to address Vitelco financial matters since early March of this year. It is also the first meeting under new PSC Chairman Joseph Boschulte. (See "PSC Replaces Wells as Chairwoman.")
Back Talk Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.