4 Sep 2014

Utilities company free to sue CNMI govt for unpaid bills

4:23 pm on 4 September 2014

A judge has found that the Northern Marianas government can be sued for possibly millions of dollars worth of unpaid bills by the state utilities company.

The Commonwealth Utilities Corporation launched legal action last year to collect the debts.

The government had countered that CUC was part of the state so it wasn't possible to sue them.

A Superior Court judge has now ordered on the side of CUC.

The company's lawyer Michael White welcomes the decision and hopes the matter can be resolved shortly.

"We want to get the bills paid and that's our objective and that's really our only objective. We didn't file this lawsuit to embarrass anybody. It's just to call attention to the problem and to have the court recognise that, yes we're entitled to get paid for the services that we provide to the central government and other agencies."

Mr White says there are probably about 20 million dollars worth of unpaid bills relating to government agencies. The government disputes this amount.