The work team of the acting executive director of the Electric Power Authority (PREPA), Efran Paredes Maisonet, is the same as the outgoing head of the public corporation José Ortiz, which reinforces the call of the president of the Union of Workers of the Electricity and Irrigation Industry (Utier), Ángel Figueroa Jaramillo, who must look for new friends to bring the island’s electrical system to life.
“We have not been able to evaluate its execution and especially that it has not had the space since an interim to make changes in a work team that has shown total failure in the face of what the country aspires as an energy service. The work team that you have there is inherited. I believe that if PREPA’s Governing Board accepts the recommendation of the governor (to appoint her to the position), the first thing that should come from a decision by her is to change her work team, ”said Figueroa Jaramillo, in an interview with. THE SPOKESMAN.
He warned that if Paredes Maisonet chooses to keep the same team as Ortiz, his leadership would not bring “any change.” “From the point of view of the situation, and we have seen it in the last two weeks that despite its effort to direct confidence to the country, the reality is that it has the same work team that has failed in the last two years, “he said, and insisted that it is mandatory to make radical changes,” such as giving a new vision to the PREPA Press Office.
However, Figueroa Jaramillo acknowledged that Paredes Maisonet has shown an openness to dialogue with the PREPA workers’ union. “He and I have had more meetings this week than I have had with CEO José Ortiz in two years. In that sense, there is an opening, but beyond that there must be real execution and solutions. We have presented alternatives, proposals and studies that the governor had since September and the same that José Ortiz had since July 2018. We are now going to see what her vision will be on this issue, “he said.
The proposals that the Utier presented to Paredes Maisonet on August 27 seek that the pruning of vegetation near the power lines be ordinary and continuous. “We made available the agreement to recruit emergency employees that cost between $ 18 to $ 20 an hour with fringe benefits for a year. They can evaluate how many employees they need permanently and to attend the pruning area ”, he pointed out.
He said that one of the challenges Paredes Maisonet has is evaluating all the “scandalous” contracts that exist in PREPA. He pointed to private contracts for the sum of $ 51,000 in which they charge PREPA even for the thickness of the trees they were going to cut. “That is, $ 51,000 for a mile of tree pruning when with us it is $ 12,000 as expensive and you paying $ 51,000. I think you should consider the proposal that we made for the pruning, for customer service and for hiring in the generating plants, ”he said.