Generator bought by city in January still idle in August
Green seeks answers

Stabroek News
August 8, 2000

The idle state of a generator bought by the city in January but still not functional up to now has been cited by Mayor Hamilton Green as a classic case of the problems he has experienced with city officers.

Responding to a Stabroek News letter writer who had complained of not being able to reach the mayor and others at City Hall, Green laid some of the blame on increased power outages and the non-functioning of a new generator.

The Mayor responding via a letter in this newspaper as well, said the Mayor and City Council had been plagued by incessant and prolonged power outages.

He said as a result of the need for a reliable electricity supply for the efficient functioning of the switchboard, a generator was purchased with the consent of the full council. Green said the generator had the capacity to power the entire City Hall.

However, according to the Mayor, the generator which was purchased from AINLIM in January has not been put to use.

The matter of the generator was also raised by the Mayor in his letter to the Minister of Local Government Harripersaud Nokta, requesting an independent investigation into the operations at City Hall. The Minister has since ordered the probe.

In the letter, Green stated that at one of the council's statutory meetings some time ago, the City Engineer's Department had given an undertaking that the generator would have been functional within a week.

The Mayor complained that after a series of blackouts and no reply to a query from a councillor about when the generator would be commissioned, he wrote Town Clerk (TC) Beulah Williams asking her for an explanation.

Green told Nokta that he got no reply and observed that the non-functioning of the generator was causing great inconvenience and was a waste of time.

According to correspondence between the TC and the Mayor seen by this newspaper, a second generator was paid for. In a letter to the TC dated July 17, Mayor Green stated that she had told him that the inability to have the generator functioning was because of a dispute with an identified supplier of a transformer. He said later the TC had advised him that there was "some difficulty" with the automatic changeover.

Green in the letter said the TC had promised that during the first week in May the generator would have been fully functional within a fortnight. The Mayor had also asked for written proposals for the safe and effective maintenance of the generator.

In a letter dated the same day, the TC wrote that the generator was functional, but was not in use. She stated that there was a need for an "additional generator (a transformer)" to have the automatic changeover operational.

The TC's letter further stated that it was advisable that the transformer be installed before the generator was made operational so as to facilitate the automatic changeover. She also disclosed that a cheque to the value of $329,000 had been paid on June 15 to C&N Trading from whom "the generator" [transformer] was being purchased.

According to the TC, the generator purchased from AINLIM carried a one-year warranty. She said that maintenance and servicing would be done by the company for one year, while the council would have to provide oil and fuel.

Mayor Green had responded querying why the council had paid for goods that were not available immediately or shortly after payment.

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