House Bill 9310 (NEPC Franchise Bill), a significant piece of legislation introduced in the esteemed halls of Congress by distinguished Negrense Representatives Joseph Stephen Paduano, Juliet Marie De Leon Ferrer, and Francisco Benitez, seeks to confer a franchise upon the Negros Electric and Power Corporation (NEPC). This franchise, if granted, has the potential to revolutionize the delivery of electricity to end-users in the Cities of Bacolod, Silay, Talisay, and Bago, as well as the Municipalities of Murcia and Don Salvador Benedicto.
The core mission of NEPC is to inject an initial capital investment of Two Billion pesos into revitalizing and modernizing electric power distribution. This endeavor is designed to render the delivery of electricity exceptionally reliable and efficient to consumers, businesses, institutions, and all other users within its designated franchise area. At present, electrical distribution in the aforementioned regions is entrusted to the Central Negros Electric Cooperative Inc. (CENECO), and its franchise is slated to expire in 2030.
CENECO, functioning as an electric cooperative, confronts various constraints stemming from limited funding, an absence of additional Capital Expenditures, and a need for more access to contemporary technological advancements. To ameliorate these issues and pave the way for more efficient power distribution, CENECO member-consumer-owners have recently agreed to engage in a collaborative venture with Primelectric Holdings Incorporated, a subsidiary of NEPC. It is pertinent to mention that NEPC is affiliated with the laudable MORE Electric and Power Corporation (MORE Power) in Iloilo City.
This consortium’s track record is impressive, underscored by its ability to rehabilitate and modernize the Iloilo City distribution system swiftly. Following the acquisition of previously neglected facilities from the erstwhile distribution utility company, within three years, this consortium substantially reduced system losses, expanded its clientele by over 30,000 new customers and lowered power costs. Local government officials and consumers in Iloilo City and neighboring regions have unequivocally endorsed and extolled the achievements of MORE Power.
What unequivocally distinguishes NEPC is its proficient management team, reflecting the same leadership that spearheaded the success of MORE Power. Furthermore, NEPC enjoys the bountiful financial resources of the conglomerate that commands several publicly listed companies, including Bloomberry Resorts Corporation (BLOOM), Manila Water Company, Inc. (MWC), and Apex Mining Company, Inc. (APX).
In their proposal for House Bill, officially submitted on September 25, these three distinguished lawmakers assert, “Considering the proven capabilities of Negros Electric and Power Corp. and its potential to revolutionize the power distribution landscape in Central Negros, the Congress has a compelling rationale to grant the franchise.” They further emphasize that conferring the franchise upon NEPC can catalyze economic growth and elevate the quality of life in our beloved nation.
The Negrense lawmakers reiterate, “With NEPC’s expertise and formidable resources, Central Negros stands poised to embrace reliable, efficient, and cost-effective electrical distribution services that will undeniably redound to the benefit of its esteemed residents and thriving businesses.” They also earnestly seek the support of their fellow Members of Congress for the expeditious and timely passage of this pivotal legislation.
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