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GBPA affirms GBPC regulatory compliance

The Port Authority, along with their regulatory expert consultant have been working on GBPC’s rate filing over the last number of months.  The Regulatory Framework, agreed to in January 2013, requires GBPC to submit a full rate case to the regulator (GBPA) in 2015 in order to apply for rates for 2016-2019.  As in other regulated businesses, the Power Company has had to submit a number of studies and statistics in order to justify any change in rates.  These included a Cost of Service Study (which determines the actual cost to serve various classes of customers), a depreciation study, service level information and detailed financials laying out the operating costs and the justification for them.

The Port Authority’s regulatory team have been reviewing the information in depth and ensuring that the needs of the customers are being met.  Sarah St. George stated that “We have been receiving feedback from many customers and stakeholders in Grand Bahama which we are including in our demands to GBPC.  Customers are obviously concerned about the cost of power so we are pushing hard on GBPC to maintain the price as much as possible.  We have also heard that we need to do more for the low-income customers so GBPC is reviewing their customer classes to see what can be done for that group."

The other issues being addressed are creative ways to encourage economic development, introducing renewable energy onto the grid without sacrificing service and confirming that the rate structure being proposed is in line with industry standards.  Ian Rolle noted that “the GBPA engaged a regulatory consultant who is very familiar with regional approaches to utility rate filings.  He has been able to provide us with comparative information from other island utilities as well as North American standards.  We expect that GBPC should conform with best in class expectations.” 

The GBPA regulatory team indicated that negotiations with GBPC will continue over the next few weeks and that stakeholder engagement would follow.  The rate structure must be agreed to by December 1st in order for it to be implemented on January 1st, 2016.

The Grand Bahama Port Authority would like to remind the public that monthly reporting of GBPC operating protocols under the Regulatory Framework Agreement can now be viewed at www.gbpa.com

ABOUT GBPA


The Hawksbill Creek Agreement (HCA) gave GBPA responsibility for the development, administration and management, and provision of services within an area called the 'Port Area' (230 sq. miles). GBPA was mandated by this Agreement to build a deep water harbour, an industrial community and required infrastructure for the City.

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PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE


GBPA has achieved an astonishing amount since its inception in 1955.  When first created it was a Grand Bahamian business conglomerate charged not only with land and commercial development but also with all the regulatory and administrative functions of the Freeport/Lucaya.

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THE WAY FORWARD


Firstly, I wish to thank Joan Albury and the Counsellors for this platform enabling us to share with the Grand Bahama community, the outlook for our island! 2015 marks the 60th year of the birth of Freeport and the Hawksbill Creek Agreement; 60 years of a partnership between The Government of The Bahamas and The Grand Bahama Port Authority. I'm here to raise hopes for 2015 and to lay a few popular myths to rest - For those who don't know me, I am Sarah St George.

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