Power bills going up

| 04/05/2009

(CNS): Grand Cayman’s power provider Caribbean Utilities Company (CUC) will be increasing its base rates by 2.4 percent starting on 1 June, which will appearing on that month’s customer bills. The firm power said a typical residential customer using 1000 kWh with a monthly bill of $195.00 would see bills go up by around $2.44 a month. The rate, in theory, must be approved by the ERA which issued a statement on Friday that suggested the increase was in-line with the power firm’s licence.

 “Under Condition 19.2 of CUC’s Transmission and Distribution Licence, an increase in electricity base rates is scheduled to take effect on 1st June, 2009 if the submission from CUC is verified by the ERA,” Philip Thomas Managing Director of the Electricity Regulatory Authority said.

In a statement Thomas explained that there are two basic components of consumers’ electricity bills – fuel factor and base rate. Following negotiations with government over its new licence signed in April 2008 the deal reduced the base rate by 38 percent and froze those rates until June 2009.  CUC said that it has not increased its bates rates for seven years but has invested significant amounts in infrastructure and improved the service. CUC customers will not feel that is the case however, following the huge hikes in the fuel rate last year owing to the increase in oil prices worldwide. Customers have in effect only enjoyed the benefits of the negotiated reduction for a few months and will now face a further increase at a time when the community is feeling the economic pinch.

CUC, however, is within the terms of the agreement which allows for an increase in accordance with inflation. "CUC has not increased its base rates since August 2002” the power firm stated. “During that time the Company has invested CI $258.8 million in transmission and distribution as well as generation equipment, namely, new generators, substations, poles and transformers. This investment in infrastructure ensures continued reliability and additional infrastructure to meet customer growth.”

It said its operating expenses have increased significantly from CI$67.6 million in 2002 to CI$135.1 million at the end of 2008 while it still had to cut base rate as a result of the negotiations with government. Despite this the firm said it has maintained a high level of service and reliability during this period investing in transmission and distribution as well as generation equipment, such as new generators, substations, poles and transformers.

“ However, if CUC is to maintain this high level of service and reliability, and remain an economically viable company, then CUC has to be able to continue to make investments in equipment and maintenance and offer a fair return to shareholders and bondholders who finance the company’s growth at rates reflecting that return,” the firm stated.

The ERA said CUC has submitted its calculations to the ERA which indicate an average increase in base rates of 2.4percent and it is subject to verification by the Authority but following that verification the new base rates will be implemented and remain at that level until 1 June, 2010.  

CUC has also submitted a Cost of Service Study to the ERA which may result in reallocation of rates among customer classes. These changes would be designed to provide an equitable distribution of costs between all classes of customers based on the services actually received. CUC also noted that it now has 24, 518 customers compared to 19, 1 98 in 2002 when it last increased its base rate. 


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  1. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

    Alot of emotion for Just the Facts!

  2. I C, U C, we all C says:

    "Just the facts" and "Afraid to strap on a pair also", are you two married to each other? If not you should give it some consideration.

  3. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

    Just the Facts-

    What is it with you and this gimme, gimme, gotta have it all now?   Again, to put it another way, clearly you have a vested interest here.  If you aren’t the CUC you’re a spin doctor.  Two words- WHY NOW?  Those who negotiated the deal didn’t have a crystal ball about what the state of the economy would be now.


    • Just the Facts says:

      I happen to believe people should not make their decisions based on disinformation. No spin, no bias. JUST THE FACTS! Deal with it.

  4. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

    By the way, props to the Dept. of Tourism and their Summer Splash campaign.  At least they had some insight about what constitutes a reasonable profit. 

  5. Steven Segal says:

    Dang 24 played tonight

  6. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

    And Just the Facts, Too!

    All of us licensed with the Dept. of Tourism could have signs put up stating that visitors willkeep the A/C at 79 degrees, wash their own dishes and let them dry in a rack, wash their cloths in the sink and let them dry outside, don’t turn on a TV or play a DVD, cook outside and dine by candlelight.  Doesn’t work like that when you rent your home out pal! 

  7. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

    To 2 of Us-

    I am renting to tourists.  Now do you get my point?  My vacation home has all of the amenities.  Tourists want and use the amenties.  Using the ammenties equals $1350/ month!!!!  I’m not renting to touriststhis year!

  8. I C, U C, we all see says:

    I charged my cell phone at work today, think I’ll do it again tomorrow. Hee hee, saved myself $2.44, make them pay for it instead.

    Those of you who have such a big issue with this, jog on over to the CUC office on your lunch break, sit in Customer Service waiting to be seen, while there, plug in your cell phone, do this 3 or 4 times a month and you are all square.



  9. Anonymous says:

    There is always some moron who has to bring the Caymanian vs Expat line in any discussion even it has absolutely nothing to do with it. In the States it is the color issue that is brought up whenever it suits, in Cayman it is always the local vs expats issue that is raised, usually when a person has no proper points to argue and is trying to find something they can continue to row over.


  10. Anonymous says:

    Two of us live in a 2 bed 2.5 bathroom town house (1300 sqft). I try and do my laundry only once a week. I hang out my clothes instead of using the dryer. I turn off lights in rooms that I am not in. I use energy efficient light bulbs. I run my a/c 24 hrs a day! My CUC bill is not more than $250 a month. There are ways of saving on electricity.

    So ‘Afriad’ what the hell were you doing $1350/month- keeping every single light in you condo on!! The ac cranked down to 60!!! You may want to adress a few things you do to keep you bill down. I know people who own 5 bedroom houses who don’t even use that much electric.

    It would be interesting to see how many of the complaints here are by those who believe that we should get rid of the expats and let Cayman be like it was when there was no electricity!!!!!!

  11. Anonymous says:

    First of all, you need to stay with the facts. I have never said that the increase is unfair. I have said the timing is very very bad.

    Secondly, your reality seems to be different from mine. I have gotten nothing but increased bills so far this year. From the schools, to the insurance companies, to the water authority, to the grocery stores etc. It is not a matter of whether it is fair or not, it is a matter of what more increases can we afford, and yes, it seems to be much worse in cases where the company has the monopoly. I have not claimed that the pricing strategy of other businesses are fair, but I am given a choice where I shop or where I send my kids to school. I do not have a choice where I get my electricity from (don’t even suggest the solar etc). As mentioned before, the CUC increase will have a domino effect at a time where everyone is already struggling.

    Leave it at that. You and I have a different reality and your reality seems to be different from most people on this blog. I am glad you are a satisfied customer who is happy to deal with the ripple effect this increase will bring. More power to you. I am on the other hand are fed up …….

    • Anon says:

      To: Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 05/05/2009 – 12:16.

      Your ‘choice’ non-point has been addressed over and over. Your affordability argument has been answered. I cannot help you if you choose not to understand. We both have the same reality. The difference is I choose to take a constructive, realistic approach. 

      I see that there are a number of posters who agree with me.  

  12. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:


    2.4 times ridiculous equals totally acceptable.

  13. Dr.S.K.Mohanty says:

    Though I dont relish a price hike I wish CUC acted in a more responsible manner and just do the right thing by the people of thi s fair nation.


    Anybody who agrees with me-contact me.


  14. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:


    For the love of God, how much are you being paid for this CUC promotion?  Is someone holding a gun to your mouth?  Shall I call the police?  How can we help you?

    • Just the Facts says:

      Ever notice how Afraid is completely unable to deal with the facts and always tries to divert attention from this by some completely silly, irrelevant comment like "I hope their paying you", "shall I call the police". No emotional hype, please.


  15. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

    Yo, Just the Facts-

    I do hope that you are being properly compensated for the opinions that you are expressing here.  2.6% times ridiculous is f–king ridiculous.

  16. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

    Just the Facts-

    The "real world" to which you refer is Grand Cayman;  a place where avarice knows no bounds.  A 2.6% increase of what was ridiculously inflated by a monopoly in the first place is well, you get the picture.  As you might surmise, I’m just an outsider looking in on this mess- I find it both alarming and amusing that you don’t realize how "grey" this island appears to be.  Keep wringing your hands and good luck with all that transparency stuff.

    • Just the Facts says:

      Dear afraid, what you are not getting is that this increase is not about avarice, it is about using a percentage of CPI as a proxy to reflect increases in costs. You have not shown that the prices were already ridiculously inflated. They were not. CUC has not had a rate increase since 2002. It had a rate decrease in January, 2008. CUC is now earning a reasonable return (under 10%) – much less than they were entitled to under their old licence (15%).  I note that you have already inflated 2.4% to 2.6%. This is symptomatic of the problem  – people get carried away and start to exaggerate.  So before you get alarmed and amused try to get the facts right.  

  17. I C, U C, we all C says:

    How to save $2.44 a month;

    Eat more carrots, turn off a light.

    Smoke 1/2 a cigarrette less per day.

    Buy Borden cheese instead of Kraft.

    Do you really need that last beer?

    Drop your overweight child at the end of Walkers Road, make them walk the rest of the way to school and continue straight down South Church Street to work.

    Drive straight past Burger King without stopping


  18. Anonymous says:


    No, you don’t get it. It doesn’t matter which supermarket you choose, you are still paying exorbitant prices that far exceed costs. On some items they literally make 200% profit.
    I really think you don’t get it! When CUC is increasing their rates, it is not just passed on to the consumer once by CUC directly, but it is passed on to us by many other businesses as well as their cost will increase and hence the businesses are going to also increase their rates and fees. I am sure that schools, hospitals, insurances, banks, hotels, restaurants etc. will see an increase of more than $2.44/month in their electricity bill as I would assume that their electricity bill is not even close to the region of CI$ 195/month, but more likely several thousand dollars per month. So not buying a glossy magazine purchase is not going to cut it as the overall cost passed on to US could be easily resulting in more than CI$ 15 or more per month.  Obviously, it seems that it isn’t a concern for you as you may be fortunate enough to deal with this increase and truthfully, so am I. Unfortunately, a lot of people (including myself and my husband) did NOT GET A SLARY INCREASE this year, but all other cost continues to rise. More people than ever are struggling to keep up with the payment of their bills, living from pay-check to pay-check. I am not just talking about the very poor people, I am also talking about people who have to incomes from college educated people but can’t manage to put any savings aside as the living expenses are spiraling out of control. When is it going to stop?
    CUC continues to shamelessly take advantage of the fact that they have a monopolyand this is why people are upset.  The timing to implement this increase is very very bad. As asked before, if the increase isn’t all that much, why can’t CUC wait to do this next year? Hopefully the economy will be on a upward swing by then and people have gotten a pay raise again in line with the cost of living increase.
    • Anon says:

      To: Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 05/05/2009 – 08:27

      You continue to ignore the fact that all your arguments have been addressed. What is confusing you is the monopoly vs. competition issue. The thinking appears to be "CUC is a monopoly and therefore, by the very fact, any increase in rates is automatically unfair. There is more than one supermarket and therefore the lowest price offered is automatically fair". These are logical fallacies as I have already pointed out  to you. It has nothing to do with what I can or cannot afford. I have to try hard to balance my budget same as most people.  I am just being realistic about the issue.

      Is an increase in the price of electricity inflationary? Yes it is. What do I do about it? The same as I do with other sources of inflation – I cut back.  

      You keep asking the same questions even when they have already been answered:  "As asked before, if the increase isn’t all that much, why can’t CUC wait to do this next year?"

      Answer: It isn’t that much to you as an individual consumer, but it is much to CUC because of  the aggregate (when you add all the consumers increases together) increase to CUC.

  19. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

    Hey, Just the Facts-

    Here’s a factoid just 4 U-  Last summer my air conditioning bills for a 1-bedroom condo were $1350/month.  So is this a make it or break it for me- you bet your sweet, naive ass it is (I’m being sarcastic about naive ass- you’re either part of the problem or wringing your hands saying, "Oh, my!  Apparently CUC just  can’t be stopped!)   How do we pass this on to the consumer (tourists) when tourism is spiraling downward?  Personally, I plan not to use my electricity at all.  I’m quite certain that other licensees of the Dept. of Tourism are crunching their numbers also.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well you won’t have to worry. Because your total bill was 1350.00.  So look at your charges for the KWH use, and if the ERA approves you will only pay the  % on the # of KWH used, not the total bill.      

    • Just the Facts says:

      Dear Afraid, your high air-conditioning bills last summer were due to huge increases in oil prices. The issue we are discussing is a 2.4% increase in base rates. The impacts are not remotely similar.

      You can of course choose not pass it on tourists, much like you are suggesting CUC should not pass it on to you.  

      I am just trying to bring some rationality to a discussion that is heavily charged with emotion. That does not make me a part of the problem, but a part of the solution by dealing with the fact that we live in the real world and we all have to make adjustments. What is naive is to believe that emotional outbursts on the internet will solve anything, or that the govt. can somehow eliminate the impact of inflation if only it strikes the right deal.     

  20. Anonymous says:

    good Lord..you don’t get it!  when I go to the supermarket, I can chose which one I go to and I can go to the lowest priced one.. Try doing that with CUC. The $2.44 is not what bothers and it seems that you can afford it even if it was a lot higher which in a lot of cases it will be, the problem I have is the ability of CUC to just keep on nailing us when we can hardly afford to pay what we are paying now.  What you fail to realise is that there are are lot of Caymanians out there that can ill-afforded to let go $2.44 and believe me they are not buying glossy magazines, they are stretching every dollar to pay rent, mortgage and yes CUC.

    If you think it is so little to pay and everyone can afford it, let me know how I can get in touch with you and you can pay mine and I will keep my mouth shut from here on out.

    • Anonymous says:

      "good Lord..you don’t get it!  when I go to the supermarket, I can chose which one I go to and I can go to the lowest priced one."

      No, you don’t get it. It doesn’t matter which supermarket you choose, you are still paying exorbitant prices that far exceed costs. On some items they literally make 200% profit. Take infant formula for example. In Jamaica a tin of formula costs the equivalent of US$10 (CI$8) while at Hurley’s it is CI$17.00 and Fosters it is CI$14.00. Sure you can choose Fosters but you are still grossly overpaying. CUC’s increase is about covering their costs (it is less than the rate of inflation), not profiteering.  Please tell me you are getting this.

      If you are honest, you will acknowledge that there are all areas that we can cut back on. If it’s not glossy magazines it’s something else. We waste a lot. The bottom line you cannot expect someone else to pay for what you consume. CUC is just a convenient scapegoat because at the moment it is a monopoly. 

  21. Jedi Dread says:

     Cayman, you need another industry…  and quick.

    The forces of Obama and Cuba, shall bring Cayman’s most lucrative industries to their knees..

    The Islands in the Sun should be at the fore-front of Solar Technology. The next govt. needs to invest heavily in the development of alternate energy sources.

    Cayman, you can lead the Caribbean into the next century. 

    Sell Cayman as a test-bed for Hybrid Technologies that are being developed in countries such as Switzerland and Denmark.

    Change your thought process and flee from all the bickering, my gosh…

    It’s time to to put on your thinking caps and removing the grin of criticism.

    May Jah Bless Us All.

    – Jedi Dread –

    ***Please see below***

    I presented the following to the sitting Government and their response was "It’s not feasable." WTF???

    The Air Car and it’s manufacture…

    A Turn Key Car Factory, for vehicles that run on Air!!!  http://www.theaircar.com 

    >>Imagine if the govt had listened to me and spent that 3 mil on one of these Air Car Factories!!!

    Imagine Cayman with a serious competitive export product.<<



    • Anonymous says:

      What a great idea, Team Cayman. Boycott CUC! That way you can avoid the $2.44 and pay hundreds more to run your own generator. That”ll show them!   

  23. Anonymous says:

    i don’t get it! When all other companies on island are doing what they can to help out in this failing economy, these guys have carte blanche to raise their prices. The LOGB should be up in arms right now and giving a public statement about how he is going to deal with this.

    It is ridiculous how after these many years that we cannot get competition in the electricity business.  Do you hear LIME or Digicel saying they are going to be increasing their prices? No, because they are in competition. We need a government with balls to stand up against these guys. As much as I like Arden, he is the wrong man for the job becasue of his previous relationship with them. Sometimes you have to take the high road and do the right thing. These guys have milked us for years and will continue to do so. I just hope for Cayman’s sake that we get a government willing to take this bull by the horns and deal with this long overdue raping of our people.

    Enough is Enough!!


    • Anonymous says:

      "i don’t get it! When all other companies on island are doing what they can to help out in this failing economy, these guys have carte blanche to raise their prices. The LOGB should be upin arms right now and giving a public statement about how he is going to deal with this."

      You’re right about one thing – you don’t get it. "All other companies" are not doing what they can "to help out" in this economy. Supermarkets  in particular  continue to charge extortionate markups on each item.

      There is no reason for the LOGB or anyone else to be "up in arms".   Nothing strange or untoward has happened. CUC has announced a very minor increase in rates for the first time since 2002 which it is entitled to under its new licence. They don’t have "carte blanche" to raise rates. It is determined according to a formula based on 80% of inflation. I wish that every other company could not raise their prices more than 80% of inflation.  Instead, we have businesses that get over 100% profit over and above any increased costs. 

      Just don’t buy that glossy magazine at the supermarket checkout this week and bingo you have saved that $2.44! 

      You really need to get a grip.   

  24. Anonymous says:

    I bet none of those complaining about the skyrocketing cost of living are willing to get rid of their blackberries, acrylic nails, quarterly shopping trips to miami, flat screen TVs with Direct TV, etc.  Caymanians – we need to get our priorities in order!

    Anyone who cannot admit that their light bill went down with fuel prices should get their wiring at home checked!

  25. Anonymous says:

    I agree with the poster on – if this increase is so little why then can’t CUC bear the cost and why now when the people are all maxed out with high costs.

    Why does this PPM government not demand that CUC pay the price of this SMALL INCREASE, just as they agreed to allow CUC to put the burden of ‘Hurricane Ivan’ surcharge on the people of this country. Have we not paid enough!!

  26. Anonymous says:

    In relation to Just the facts

    no, I did not get on the internet and complain when my hairdresser and dentist raised their fees, because I had choices and options whether I wanted to continue my relationship with them or not. With CUC there aren’t any choices, that is the sad reality. Also, as I said in my previous post, whilst the "small increase" may not be the upsetting part, the issue is the time they chose to implement that increase. If the increase is really so small and minor, then why couldn’t they wait until early next year to increase the fees, giving people and businesses a chance to recover from the current economic situation.

    • Just the facts says:

      "no, I did not get on the internet and complain when my hairdresser and dentist raised their fees, because I had choices and options"

      Businesses increase prices even where there is competition. You are not seriously suggesting that you have not paid for higher increases in those businesses that you continue to patronize, are you? We both know that is untrue. The prime example being the supermarkets. An even better example are insurance companies. They have increased rates post-Ivan in some cases 300%. There we are talking thousands of dollars; here it is $2.44. You didn’t picket them, but here you are protesting.  

      You have an option with CUC too – use less electricity, or install solar panels. 

      The increase is minor on an individual customer level but in aggregate it is not minor to CUC. Why is that so difficult for you to understand?

      Election fever gone crazy!


  27. Twyla M Vargas says:


    They just could not wait until after May 20th.   See what I tell ya,

    LIGHT BILL GONE UP. Some people can afford it but I am so sorry for poor people, we cant even afford to buy bread milk and toilet paper, nuch less extra added on to the light bill.   BIG MAC, BIG MAC, Where are you, you are our only hope, I dont care what anyone say.  Voters better listen to their candidates goooooooood these next 2 weeks, because if you dont you will suffer for 4 years.

    Bodden Town I know you are going to do the right thing..  MAKE SURE YOU VOTE FOR #6  THERESA PITCARIN LEWIS AND TWO OTHERS WHO WILL WORK WITH HER.  And remember, it Aint no good of having three people not talking to each other,   NO, NO, NO,  they will play cut throat all day.   You know how that game go.   Good.   

     OMG, light bill gone back up again.=, ya say, what else, next. water bill, car licence,  Only Ezzard and Gilbert with that National Lottery can save us after May.   Cant you see we poor people cant afford to pay more light bill, I dont care if it is one cent, we cannot afford it.    Children are going to school with out lunch, people are drinking bush medicine, because they cannot afford to pay doctor bill.  The elderly cannot afford to buy little food and water.  JEEEESOMEPEETERS, Waa we goin doo now.

    Start stock pile grapetree  and log wood..   ahmmm!!!  what else, what else, now, oh yes, build a caboose, try find some kerosene. what else ya say,  oil lamp, oh yes, and one light bulb in the kitchen only,dont need any in the bedroom.  OMG.  Light bill gone back up. 


    • Just the facts says:

      "OMG, light bill gone back up again.=, ya say, what else, next. water bill, car licence,  Only Ezzard and Gilbert with that National Lottery can save us after May".

      Twyla, if most of us raised our A/C two degrees we would save more than $2.44 per month, or didn’t run our cars foolishly up and down the roads instead of planning trips, car pooling etc. The problem with some of our people is that we have an entitlement mentality. I have no intention to change my habits but someone else must pay for what I consume and I will rant and rave until they do. The politicians are simply indulging your fantasy during the election campaign knowing full well that they cannot deliver if they  promise they eliminate increases in the cost of living.          

      I understand why you like the idea of a National Lottery – you don’t have to change your habits. Magically the money will appear. Someone else will pay. But it is not a saviour. With our small population at most it will generate $1m per annum net and who knows what the social cost will be. Politician are selling you fantasy and you are buying.    

  28. Anonymous says:

    Breaking News!!!!!

    Look like the honeymoon is over between the PPM and CUC…What the PPM brought from this relationship More Hardship To Caymanians……Please Vote the PPM out!!!!!What CUC got a Big 20 years Contract!!!!!  Again Vote the PPM out!!!!

  29. B T FINEST says:

    HURRY UP BIG MAC we need you and the UDP Team to get us out of this mess.  Show CUC what time it is.  Everybody know only you can with them.


    A Better Way Foward


    • Anonymous says:

      Please about BIG MAC and his team….. When Mac was on the Boardof Directors at CUC what did he do for us Caymanians?????

      Nothing, I thought that was what you were going to say.

      He had all opportunities then to negotiate for us Caymanians but he didn’t.


      • Anonymous says:

        AGREED that BIG MAC did nothing when he had the power to do so with CUC!  Therefore both parties need to ensure this issue is resolved for the people because under both governments the monopoly continued.

    • Anonymous says:

      I would like for you to go and look at you light for 2000, and see the big difference in the new CUC rate after the new licence.    Do you know that this is the best rate in many years?  This is the reason that we need education. 

      • Anonymous says:

        Blah Blah!

        All you can hear is the back and forth, and no one admits that the PPM has failed to fix the problem.

        • Anonymous says:

          "All you can hear is the back and forth, and no one admits that the PPM has failed to fix the problem"

          First you need to establish that there is still a problem, and please no more of the bleating about $2.44. 

    • Anonymous says:

      Under the UDP government, CUC was not allowed to hike up its electrical cost as it wished.  God knows, we are suffering in this here island, and to hear that our light bill is going to increase in June makes one want to pull out the little hair I have left.  What are we to do and where are we to turn?  It is this high cost of living that contributes to crime whenpeople can’t make ends meet.  Tell me someone, is this the progress the PPM is boasting about??

      • Anonymous says:

        Who started the negotiation and wanted the ERA body before Ivan.    YOUR UDP.

      • Just the Facts says:

        Under the UDP Govt. an agreement was negotiated with CUC which had it been implemented by the PPM Govt would have allowed CUC to obtain a return on equity of 18-24%. CUC is presently earning 9.1% return on rate base (less than 13% return on equity) as opposed to the 15% it was entitled to under its old licence. The UDP had also agreed for CUC to have a rate increase in May, 2008. In other words, you would have seen a massive rate increase last year just in time for the high bills due to escalations in oil prices. We are very fortunate that the PPM  Govt. negotiated a better deal for the consumer yet the Leader of the Opposition is trying to mislead the public that the present deal is a ‘sweetheart deal’ for CUC.  



  30. Anonymous says:

    To the people who are explaining the CUC increase – please, we are no idiots and do realize that the cost for CUC has gone up as well. Problem is, how is this "small increase" going to effect a lot of businesses (especially the smaller ones) in the long run as this is not the only utility bill that has gone up? For example, my insurance, my children’s school fees, my dentist, my hair dresser, and the grocery stores have all increased their prices. Whilst I can do without a pedicure, a hair cut, or maybe even the dentist, I will not be the only one cutting back, so what if another 50 patrons of a beauty place or a restaurant are deciding that they can do without? The business is eventually going to close down, jobs will be lost etc. The person who is lucky to still stay in business is going to increase their cost because they can, because they are greedy and because there is now less competition to deal with………Do you see how it all adds up and where it is going? While prices do increase over time, in this case, the timing is just VERY BAD and shows no consideration for the customer….but then, CUC does not need to show any consideration as they have the monopoly on something no-one can do without……..

    • Anonymous says:


      The PPM should never have made him the Minister in charge of CUC – his former employer. If the PPM had made the right choices we wouldn’t have had to pay CUC millions of dollars after Ivan – with not a single share in the company to show for it -, and we wouldn’t have to currently subsidize CUC at the tone of $6M – and we wouldn’t be facing a new rate increase.

      • Anon says:

        To: Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 05/04/2009 – 13:40

        If you scroll down you will that your "no shares in CUC" non-point has already been addressed. It is pretty scurrilous to suggest that Arden was in bed with CUC when you have basis for saying it. Your idea seems to be, if ever again in my  lifetime CUC gets even the smallest of rate increase that means there was someone was not looking out for the consumer.      

    • Anonymous says:

      PPM I am a supporter but you MUST prevent this from happening!  How could this be allowed during these difficult times! If it is such a small increase then why cant the wait until the economy pick up before doing the increase.  Whichever candidates gets in, I hope this monopoly is ended once and for all!  Look at what happened when we stopped C&W!

    • Just the facts says:

      To: Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 05/04/2009 – 12:47.

      We all live in the real world. In that world no govt, PPM or UDP, can eliminate the effect of inflation especially where it is imported. If pretend that they can they are lying to you. We must all tighten our belts. CUC just had a major belt tightening with its new licence.  

      The truth is that all the businesses you mention have already increased their prices and often by a much larger percentage than 2.4%. Yet you did not get on the internet to complain about them. Why is it that only the utilities are the bad guys? Let’s think rationally folks. 

      As for the people who are trying to make this a UDP vs. PPM political issue I suggest you read the 2004 Heads of Agreement negotiated by the UDP Govt. with CUC which would have allowed CUC to get a return of 18-24% return on equity! In other words, if CUC’s return on equity fell below 18% it would be entitled to as much rate increase as it needed to get back above that figure.  The 2.4% increase is paltry to the wopping increase you would now be getting had the PPM Govt. proceeded on that basis.  Under the present licence CUC will normally be in the 9-11% return on rate base range. if they reach 13%, then will have to give consumers a rate decrease.  If anyone was a friend of CUC it was the UDP Govt.       

  31. Anonymous says:

    Oh Yes and this all comes thanks to a Government who belives in cutting down all of our trees, but not planting a single one back to try and cool the place down a bit.

    Great CUC – raise the rates in electricity, go ahead, the people can pay more. After all  we got the PPM to take care of us. Caymanians should be so proud.

  32. Anonymous says:

    Thanks PPM for once again putting us in HELL. Sweat we will. Lose weight, maybe. Die of dehydration most certainly.

  33. Anonymous says:

    Lets not forget about the Water Authority I think they need to be dealt with as well urgently by whichevewr party comes into Power!!

  34. Afraid to strap on a pair also says:

    Death of tourism with one fell swoop!

    The cost of renting out a property equals the cost of letting it sit on some parts of the island.  This would be the deal-breaker.

    • Just the facts says:

      "Death of tourism with one fell swoop!"

      Don’t be so dramatic. In light of the costs generally in Cayman this would not be a significant factor and would barely register on the average guest’s bill.

  35. Anonymous says:

    Thanks again to the PPM for this one!! Is this a coincidence that it is proposed to happen just after the election!! No – lets make sure the PPM dont get back in and give CUC the opportunity to follow through on this proposal to increase our cost of living even more than they have already!!!

    • Anon says:

      "Thanks again to the PPM for this one!! Is this a coincidence that it is proposed to happen just after the election!!"

      They’ve told you what it is going to be before the election and this was always required of CUC to announce well in advance. If it was designed to hide it at election time it would not have been for another several months. Whatever the UDP are telling you their agreement with CUC would have given CUC a much bigger increase from May, 2008 just in time for the already high bills due to escalation in oil prices. CUC’s return on equity is around 13%. Under the UDP agreement CUC would have been able to get a rate increase so they could get a rate of return of 18%!  Ask CG about it.

  36. Anonymous says:

    I guess that CUC is looking for money to re-employ some of their former employees, just in case they are not successful, come May 20th.

  37. Lack ofIntegrity says:

    Shame on CUC!

    • Anonymous says:


      Tricked us once, shame on you – Trick us twice – shame on us!

      I know people won’t let these CUC supporters get re-elected to office again.

  38. i C, U C, we all see says:

    Let me be the first to publicly congratulate and commend CUC on this groundbreaking initiative to tackle the growing obesity problem.

    This will assist greatly with my diet plan, two less beers a month for me, One less Biggie sized combo a month for my obese child 10 year old, damn it!

    Turning down or perhaps even off my air conditioner for the summer months should help me sweat off a few pounds too. I think I’ll keep the windows closed too to maximise the benefits

    If I give you all my money, I can no longer afford give my kid 3 or 4 bucks a day to spend at the Ice Cream trucks conspicuously parked outside our educational establisments every afternoon.

    If the fuel prices start to head back up, I may even have to think about downsizing my Monster Truck, or, god forbid, carpooling! How awful life would be.

    So thank you CUC, from the bottom of my bottom of my partially clogged left ventricle, for caring about our community.

    Might I throw in a suggestion for  a new marketing campaign?

    "Lose weight now, ask CUC how"

    • Just the facts says:

      IC, UC, it obviously doesn’t take all that to save $2.44 per month.   

  39. Caymanite says:

    Hmmm……just in time for our hottest months of the year when we all need to run a/c like crazy to prevent from melting in the heat.

    As for the powers that be stopping this tragedy, won’t happen, wasn’t it just last year that they allowed CUC to sign for another 20 years?

    Interesting to say the least.


  40. Anonymous says:

    4 More years of PPM!

  41. Anonymous says:

    Are you serious! CUC you MONEY HOGS! I swear if I had another alternative you wouldn’t get another dime of my HARD EARNED money! SHAME ON YOU! At at time like this, when you don’t know from one day to the next if you will even have a job! SHAME! SHAME!

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks PPM

      You gave CUC millions of tax-payer dollars after Hurricane Ivan without asking for a single share in return, or ensuring that they insure in the future.

      You negotiated a contract that hasn’t resulted in savings until you get voted out of office.

      You have done nothing to ensure that CUC take advantage of the current low prices of oil.

      What a failure you are PPM, and this is what bozo the fat clown calls "progress"

      • Just the facts says:

        "You negotiated a contract that hasn’t resulted in savings until you get voted out of office.

        You have done nothing to ensure that CUC take advantage of the current low prices of oil.

        You gave CUC millions of tax-payer dollars after Hurricane Ivan without asking for a single share in return, or ensuring that they insure in the future".

        Please stick to the facts. The deal with CUC resulted in savings of 15% to the consumer months before new contracts were signed on April 3, 3008.

        It is false to say nothing is being done to take advantage of the current low prices of oil. Watch out for more news reports.

        The hurricane surcharge was not a gift to CUC.  It was the result of negotiating a temporary surcharge of less than 1/2 what they were entitled to under their licence as a permanent rate increase. Many utilities in the region were allowed by the regulator to charge a similar surcharge for hurricane related damages, e.g. Jamaica Public Service, Florida Power & Light. Can you name even one where the govt. or the regulator had transferred to them a single share in the power company as result? 

        This is just more UDP propaganda.  

  42. Seems quite modest says:

    The costs of doing business in Cayman are spiralling – increased health care costs, increased work permit fees, increased charges by contractors (themselves driven by increased costs), the economic costs of roll-over and increased red-tape in employing new staff.  Not all of CUC’s costs are fuel driven.  This modest increase is some way below the rate of inflation in the Cayman Islands and it seems quite generous for the consumer. 

  43. Anon says:

    I thought the price of diesel had fallen over the last few months? I don’t see this reflected in the bills. I can remeber them telling us they were putting up the prices when the oil prices rose, but don’t remember getting the letter telling me the opposite now that oil is half the price it was.

    When will the government wake up and stop letting the residents of this island get ripped off by these monopoly companies. Intriduce some competition or enforce some price freezes

    • Anon says:

      "Intriduce some competition or enforce some price freezes".

      CUC’s base rates were frozen since 2002. In January, 2008 they were reduced by some 38% and have been frozen at that level since. Like every other company CUC has cost increases. If it is unable to pass these on to the consumer at some point it will eventually go bankrupt. Please consider the issue rationally rather than emotionally.    


      • Anonymous says:

        To all the whiners who complain about a measly $2.44 per month i suggest you buy your own generator,go solar, go wind or go in darkness.

        I can remember years ago we could purchase a pack of cigarettes for $1.00 now they are $4.00 and above, beers were $1.00 now they are $2.50 and above, these are of no use to anyone and yet I don’t hear anyone complaining about that. The facts are that most people complain when the price of necessities rise yet when the price of hobbies or habit rise they absorb it by complaining about the cost of necessities. There are some who complained about paying $3.00 for a gallon of gas but drove from the gas station to the bar and paid $4.00 for a PINT of beer and sat and drank 8 to 10  beers.

        We all need to conserve and use what we need but most important what we can afford whether it is electricity,water,gas,food or personal items.Tell me which company absorbs the increase in doing business and survives.

        This is the real world Cayman and we all need to wake up.

  44. TEAM CAYMAN (LONDON) says:

    OMG! OMG! OMG! OMG!  HOW DARE YOU SAY THAT THIS IS LOVELY!!!  This is a conspirarcy against us local Caymanians!!!  Do you know how much we pay for electric bill each month already???  It’s outrageous!!!  Ridiculous and it’s time to PROTEST against this!   They are going to leave us poor Caymanian people in the dark! They dont care about us!  We will soon be independent like Jamaica because we have no other choice!!!



    • Anon says:

      Team Cayman, you need to chill out about protests. $2.44 is a fraction of the profit Hurleys or Fosters makes on a single tin of infant formula. Are you about to go on strike against them?

      Everyone’s bill has come down dramatically with the fall in diesel prices. Be honest and check your bills since October last year.   

    • Anonymous says:

      What does the fact that you are Caymanian have to do with the electricity bill?  It does not matter if you are Caymanian or an expact, we all pay the same rate! 

    • Belle says:

      In response to……"OMG! OMG! OMG! OMG!  HOW DARE YOU SAY THAT THIS IS LOVELY!!!"

      Have you ever heard of the word ‘Sarcasm’?

  45. Anonymous says:

    Thanks PPM more high power rates could you raise water, telephone and garbage while you at it oh could you get the ministers to pay off my bank loan so i can get enough money to by gas for my car so i can get to the polls to vote you back in for another 4 more glorious years. Go ppm go ppm for a Cayman that is not for Caymanians Wey mis a Eden deh im na on Rooster tday sa

  46. Anonymous says:

    While hardly anyone got a salary increase this year and a lot of people are fearing to loose their jobs, CUC decides it is a great time to raise their fees. Great timing – it must be nice to have a monopoly on something that you know nobody can do without!

  47. Olivaire Watler says:

    Dear CNS,

    I am afraid that there are two points in which your article is inaccurate or misleading.

    1. "The firm power (sic) said a typical residential customer using 1000 kWh with a monthly bill of $195.00 would see bills go up by around $2.44 a month".

    Since 2.4% is the average increase and it is yet to be determined how this is to be allocated to individual rate classes (residential, general commercial etc.) it follows that we do not know at this stage how this affect a residential customer’s bill.

    2. "Customers have in effect only enjoyed the benefits of the negotiated reduction for a few months and will now face a further increase at a time when the community is feeling the economic pinch".

    (a) The rate reduction effected by the CIG/CUC negotiations will have been in effect for 17 months. I do not believe that 17 fits any definition of a "few".

    (b) Your statement suggests that the negotiated rate reduction will have been negated by this increase which will add an increase to the December, 2007 rates. That is clearly incorrect.  Even if the average rate of increase of 2.4% is applied to residential customer’s bills, this will be a very small fraction of the rate reduction which, as your article indicates, had reduced base rates for a 1000 KwH residential consumer by some 38%.    


  48. Anonymous says: