The Palau Public Utilities Corporation ( PPUC) said there is urgency in upgrading small water systems in outlying states, which are old and incapable of providing potable water.
In a letter to the Olbiil Era Kelulau ( OEK), PPUC CEO Frank Kyota said, however, that these upgrades needed financing support from Congress since PPUC is “statutorily barred from charging water rates at a level that would be adequate to enable us to finance the substantial cost of the needed improvements.”
RPPL 9-14, the Water Quality Act, prohibits PPUC from raising the water rate unless the water quality meets certain standards. PPUC is not getting enough revenue to make improvements to the water quality in most of the States.
“We are making investments into the state water systems to ensure that they get water 24/7, but we don’t collect enough revenue to enable us to improve the quality of the water,” said Kyota.
Kyota said the Ngatpang water system upgrade would need a sum of USD558,000, Ngaraard a sum of USD512,000, Ngaraard the sum of USD854,000, and Ngarchelong the sum of $USD75,000.
He said that these projects need to be prioritized based on several factors, including the condition of the existing facility, feasibility, and the number of impacted households.
Kyota urged OEJ to appropriate money for the projects, which will be important in the “quality of life of the public we both serve.”