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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Citizen ombudsman panel rejects confirmation of consumer rep to PREPA board



Giancarlo González Ascar (LinkedIn)

By The Star Staff


A five-member panel in the Office of the Citizen Ombudsman has rejected confirming Giancarlo González Ascar as consumer representative to the governing board of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA).


In an interview with the STAR, Citizen Ombudsman Edwin García Feliciano said Monday that González Ascar was given until Feb. 6 to turn in all required documents, which he did the week before the deadline.


However, he needed to have certified that he had 10 years of experience in the field of energy or business administration and show that he had energy expertise. He also did not submit a sworn statement detailing his personal information.


“When the candidate was asked to elaborate a little more on these aspects, the information he submitted was not to the committee’s satisfaction,” García Feliciano said. “So, for the purposes of that committee, he did not comply with the conditions.”


González Ascar told the ombudsman that he would be appealing the decision after he was informed via email. González Ascar was slated to be informed of the decision by regular mail Monday.


He was the only candidate for the position. The five-year term of the current consumer representative, Tomás Torres Placa, expires next month. The governing board, currently, has three vacancies. Once Torres Placa leaves, the board will not have the quorum needed to make decisions.


García Feliciano also said he submitted a letter to Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia and legislative leaders seeking changes to the law because at this time, it does not allow his office to launch a second process to choose the consumer representative regardless of whether González Ascar goes to court. He also said he wants LUMA Energy to participate in the process and to have money allocated to the Citizen Ombudsman Office to finance the process.


The members of the panel that made the decision were Daisy Ramos, José O. Pérez, Nilsa Vázquez, Marissa Rivera, all of whom work in the Citizen Ombudsman Office, and Maricarmen Boria Goitía, who works with PREPA.

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