Stensby to answer Congress members’ follow-up questions
By The Star Staff
Wayne Stensby, president and CEO of LUMA Energy, announced Wednesday that he has agreed to send certain responses to the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources following his recent testimony.
“LUMA’s mission from the first day of operation has been clear and forceful: to stabilize, rebuild, and transform Puerto Rico’s power transmission and distribution system to provide quality of life to the island’s millions of residents and promote economic development,” Stensby said.
“Four and a half months after operations began, we have begun to do just that,” he said. “With our more than 3,000 energetic and capable employees, we are responding to customers, we are advancing renewable interconnections, we are repairing infrastructure and we are advancing projects with FEMA.”
LUMA Energy was invited and subsequently appeared before the Natural Resources Committee as part of a supervisory hearing held on Oct. 6. The hearing was attended by many witnesses and although it lasted more than three hours, some of the committee members had additional questions, which they provided on Oct. 12 for LUMA to follow up on.
“We thank the Committee members for their time and dedication to this important issue. LUMA is here to be a transparent and accountable partner that will provide better customer service, greater emergency preparedness, and a safer and more effective workforce, and will support the general economic recovery for the island’s growth,” Stensby said. “We have just started and we remain committed to playing our fundamental role in transforming the electricity system in Puerto Rico.”
“LUMA is not here in the short term,” the official reiterated. “We are here to modernize the electrical transmission and distribution system, which will be carried out based on careful long-term data-driven planning that we will execute, subject to approval and supervision of the corresponding government entities in accordance with the law.”
LUMA Energy’s responses addressed questions from members of Congress Nydia Velázquez (D-N.Y.) and Katie Porter (D-Calif.), and from Resident Commissioner Jenniffer González Colón, at the hearing that took place virtually on Oct. 6 titled: “Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) After the Implementation of the LUMA Transmission and Distribution Contract.”
The lawmakers aimed their questions around the origin of the low power generation in Puerto Rico during August and September, the hiring of a firm specialized in the management of federal funds, the LUMA projects for the resilience of the transmission and distribution system together with FEMA and COR3, labor agreements, and the compatibility of the current system with renewable energy sources, among others.