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JPS wants stiffer penalties for electricity thieves

Published:Tuesday | April 15, 2014 | 8:27 AM

The Jamaica Public Service Company Limited (JPS) is calling for stiffer penalties for electricity thieves.



President and Chief Executive Officer of the JPS, Kelly Tomblin, told The Gleaner/Power 106 News last evening that the various anti-theft solutions tried by the company have not been working.



And she says the JPS does not want to use its last resort of denying service to problem communities.



However, Tomblin says the company is prepared to do that if the problem persists as it cannot continue to take down illegal connections only to have them put back up.



Last year the JPS estimated that there were about 150,000 to 200,000 households stealing electricity.



Its customer base for the period was 600,000.



The JPS has said it is losing between $2 million and $3 million per month because of theft.



Recently, Energy minister, Phillip Paulwell suggested that the Office of Utilities Regulations in its current review consider instituting a flat rate for people who are now stealing electricity.



However, Tomblin has refused to comment on that suggestion.



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