Senate hearings begin to investigate Whitefish Energy's contract with Puerto Rico

03 November, 2017, 00:32 | Author: Douglas Reid
  • CBS News

Whitefish Energy, a two-person outfit out of Whitefish, Mont., raised eyebrows when it landed the $300 million, no-bid contract in the weeks after Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico and left the USA territory largely without power.

The FBI's San Juan field office is "looking into circumstances surrounding the deal", the Journal reported, citing three unnamed people familiar with the matter.

PREPA says it will allow Whitefish Energy to finish its current work, and pay for the work it has already completed, which will be tens of millions of dollars. The Guardian has contacted the FBI for confirmation of the investigation.

Frustrations in Puerto Rico have been building since the storm hit and recovery efforts have been slow to reconnect power to the island's 3.4 million residents.

Whitefish, which had only two full-time employees when Hurricane Maria made landfall, raised eyebrows after a Washington Post report noted the company was based in the same hometown as Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke.

A Whitefish Energy pickup truck in Manati, Puerto Rico.

Tesla delays Model 3 volume production amid biggest-ever quarterly loss
That was well below the $2.45 a share deficit that a consensus of industry analysts had forecast, according to Thomson Reuters. Year-to-date, TSLA has gained 55.15%, versus a 16.68% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.

In a statement issued on Friday, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) said Prepa was exclusively responsible for the contract and voiced its "significant concerns" about how the deal was procured and "whether the contract prices are reasonable".

Long said that FEMA would need more money than the $52 billion in emergency relief that has been allocated thus far.

The deal has been criticized by Puerto Rican officials and US federal authorities after details emerged that the terms of the deal had not been obtained through competitive public bidding.

"Following the information that has emerged, and with the goal of protecting public interest, as governor I am asking government and energy authorities to immediately activate the clause to cancel the contract to Whitefish Energy", Rossello said in a statement, as carried by Reuters.

According to the terms of the contract, Whitefish would be paid $319 an hour for a journeyman lineman, $286 an hour for a mechanic and $322 an hour for a foreman of a power line crew.

Recommended:

  • Oppo F5 strives to make selfies cooler with AI

    Oppo F5 strives to make selfies cooler with AI

    We earlier reported that the Oppo F5 might be launched in three variants and with this announcement, the news has been confirmed. The low-end version will be available starting November 9 and high-end variant will be available starting from December 2nd.
    Apple earnings surge as it beats Wall Street forecasts

    Apple earnings surge as it beats Wall Street forecasts

    But investors will also be looking for color on the iPhone X, Apple's most expensive iPhone, during the company's earnings call. That equals earnings of $10.7 billion, or $2.07 per share, beating the anticipated $1.87.
    Indian power plant blast kills 18, up to 100 injured

    Indian power plant blast kills 18, up to 100 injured

    The 1,550 megawatt (MW) plant supplies electricity to nine states including Uttar Pradesh, according to the company's website. The plant, which started generating power in 1988, has five power generating units of 210 MW each.
  • Trio in England squad for 1st time for Germany, Brazil games

    Trio in England squad for 1st time for Germany, Brazil games

    England will host Germany on the 10th November and Brazil on the 14th at Wembley as they prepare for next year's World Cup in Russian Federation .
    Trump argues political correctness prevents action on terror

    Trump argues political correctness prevents action on terror

    President Donald Trump on Wednesday ordered for robust " extreme vetting " of travellers coming into the United States. Some accused "liberal judges" of putting political correctness ahead of US national security.
    Nintendo introduces a new Legend of Zelda-themed 2DS

    Nintendo introduces a new Legend of Zelda-themed 2DS

    The catch is that it's only for the Nintendo Switch, so if you were somehow still eyeing the Wii U version you're out of luck. Like it did previous year , Nintendo is going to release a few limited edition bundles for the holiday season.
  • Gas prices spike in OH , other Midwestern states

    Gas prices spike in OH , other Midwestern states

    Prices in Coldwater Thursday morning ranged from $2.63 to $2.69 per gallon. GasBuddy says the rise is due to Hurricane Harvey.
    Samsung brings Galaxy Note 8 Enterprise Edition to the US

    Samsung brings Galaxy Note 8 Enterprise Edition to the US

    In the US , the beta is available for T-Mobile, Sprint and unlocked versions of the phones , with just 7,500 spots open for each. If you buy the S8 you'll get $50 in Samsung Pay credit, while the S8+ will get you $100 in Samsung Pay credit.
    Christopher Bailey to leave Burberry by end of 2018

    Christopher Bailey to leave Burberry by end of 2018

    The 46-year-old was propelled into the role of chief executive in 2014, sharing it with his creative duties. "Everyone said that you could never create a big brand from nothing, but he proved it could be done".
  • Texans Fear Deshaun Watson Tore His ACL

    Texans Fear Deshaun Watson Tore His ACL

    The 2017 National Football League season has seen so many big name stars succumb to the injury bug, it's hard to keep track . That performance helped make him become the first rookie quarterback to ever win AFC Offensive Player of the Month honour.
    Kidde recalls fire extinguishers that don't extinguish fires

    Kidde recalls fire extinguishers that don't extinguish fires

    This comes three years after a vehicle fire that turned fatal after a Kidde fire extinguisher failed to work. Almost 40 million fire extinguishers in the U.S. and Canada have been recalled , according to the U.S.
    Super Mario Odyssey sold 511625 units within first three days in Japan

    Super Mario Odyssey sold 511625 units within first three days in Japan

    Put another way, more than a quarter (28.5 percent) of all Switch owners have purchased Super Mario Odyssey in the first three days.


Popular

Qualcomm sues Apple over software licensing, sharing code with Intel
In July Intel filed a statement with ITC claiming Qualcomm is trying to Force them out of the modem business with Apple. Apple uses Qualcomm modems in some of its iPhones and added Intel to the supply chain with the iPhone 7 models.

Australia shares end lower after NAB earnings; New Zealand up
The job losses over three years were announced as the bank revealed a full year net profit of $5.3 billion. NAB held its final dividend flat at 99 cents, fully franked, taking it to a full-year payout of $1.98.

Gender inequality widening after decade of progress - WEF
Women in the United States do find parity with men in educational attainment and get close on metrics of health and survival. The further away the score is from 0, the higher the "distance to parity" in the country for that sub index appears to be.

Kylie Jenner Shows Up For Halloween Dressed As An Angel
In another Snapchat post , the couple kissed, and Khloe captioned one snap of Thompson dancing with "I love this man". 'She's hungrier than ever, ' a pal told UsWeekly , adding Khloe 'opts for smaller meals throughout the day'.

A Confused Sean Hannity Calls Hillary Clinton 'President Clinton'
Hannity at one point started to say " Hillary Clinton ", but stopped and continued on about, "President Clinton". In case anyone's forgotten, Clinton is not president of the United States.