Marianas Variety

Last updateThu, 23 Aug 2018 12am







    Tuesday, August 21, 2018-11:37:07P.M.






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Power outages interrupt budget hearing, Saipan delegation session

THE House Committee on Ways and Means budget hearing for the Department of Public Safety and the Saipan and Northern Islands Legislative Delegation session were interrupted and delayed by power outages on Friday.

The budget hearing for DPS was interrupted at just past 10 a.m. while  members of the committee were asking DPS officials about their  operations.

The committee had to call for a recess but resumed its hearing  after 11 a.m. when power was restored.

Several minutes later, the power went out again, prompting the committee to conclude the proceedings.

In the afternoon, the Saipan delegation session was also interrupted by an hour-long power outage.

The Legislature doesn’t have a generator.

 Legislative Bureau Director Antonio Sablan said a generator would cost $200,000. 

Funding for a generator was among the items on the delegation’s agenda, Friday.

The delegation passed House Local Bill 20-65 which appropriates $3 million for various projects in the third senatorial district, including $70,000 for a generator.

In an advisory on Friday, the Commonwealth Utilities Corp said electrical problems experienced on the Feeder 1 circuit (relay) caused power interruptions on four feeders.

“At 10:59 a.m. [Friday] morning, the power plant experienced over-current on Feeder 1 as the demand exceeded its relay-setting,  automatically shutting the unit down. When this…occurred, it activated the protective relays, thereby shutting Engines 4 and 5 down. This automatically tripped Feeders 1, 4 then 7 and finally Kiya 2 due to low frequency and under-voltage.”

CUC added that “restoration efforts…continued throughout the day until the island power supply [was] fully restored at 3:37 p.m.”

On Thursday morning, lightning struck Power Plant 1, resulting in an islandwide outage.