Puerto Rico’s governor demands nullification of Whitefish Energy’s $300M power grid contract

FEMA said which has not approved any reimbursement requests through the power company for money to cover repairs to the island’s electrical system. The contract said the utility could not pay costs unallowable under FEMA grants, yet which also said, “The federal government is actually not a party to which contract.”

FEMA has raised concerns about how Whitefish got the deal along with also whether the contracted prices were reasonable. The 2-year-old company had just two full-time employees when the storm hit, yet which has since hired more than 300 workers.

A Whitefish contract obtained by The Associated Press found which the deal included $20,277 an hour for a heavy lift Chinook helicopter, $650 an hour for a large crane truck, $322 an hour for a foreman of a power line crew, $319 an hour for a journeyman lineman along with also $286 an hour for a mechanic. Each worker also gets a daily allowance of $80 for food, $332 for a hotel room along with also $1,000 for each flight to or through the mainland.

Whitefish Energy Holdings is actually based in Whitefish, Montana. Zinke, a former Montana congressman, knows Whitefish CEO Andy Techmanski, along with also Zinke’s son also had a summer job at a Whitefish construction site.

“I had absolutely nothing to do with Whitefish Energy receiving a contract in Puerto Rico,” Zinke recently said in a statement linked to a tweet. “Any attempts by the dishonest media or political operatives to tie me to awarding or influencing any contract involving Whitefish are completely baseless.”

Democrats also have questioned the role of HBC Investments, a key financial backer of Whitefish Energy. The Dallas-based company’s founder along with also general partner, Joe Colonnetta, has contributed thousands of dollars to Trump along with also additional Republicans. Chiames has said Colonnetta’s political donations were “irrelevant” along with also which the company could cooperate with any federal authorities.

which week, Rep. Rob Bishop, the Utah Republican who heads the House Natural Resources Committee, sent the power company director a letter demanding documents, including those related to the contract with Whitefish along with also others which show what authority the agency has to deviate through normal contracting processes. A Bishop spokesman did not immediately return a message for comment on Sunday.

A federal control board which oversees Puerto Rico’s finances announced which week which retired Air Force Col. Noel Zamot will be in charge of power reconstruction efforts. Rossello along with also additional officials have rejected the appointment, saying the local government is actually in charge of a power company which is actually $9 billion in debt along with also which had struggled with ongoing outages before hurricanes Irma along with also Maria hit last month.

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