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CAPAMA Has No Money for Employee Bonuses

By: Staff | Real Acapulco News - 14 December, 2010

(Acapulco, JG 14 December) The embattled director of CAPAMA, Rigoberto Félix Diaz, has admitted that the water authority for Acapulco is so low on cash that it cannot pay the conventional year-end bonuses to its employees (or “Aguinaldos”). The requirement is for around $25 million pesos, to be made in two installments on December 15 and in February, and amounting to a month’s pay.

The director said that CAPAMA was doing everything possible to fund the employee benefit, but cash flow has been negative, due largely to the damage caused to the system by the heavy rainy season and the construction of the road at Puerto Marqués, where workers cut a 48” water main that served 70% of the distribution system. Public utilities usually fund the annual “Aguinaldo” through a surcharge to the first bills sent to customers in the new year. This is the practice of CFE, the electricity monopoly. But with water supply being such a perennial problem, many customers have simply stopped paying their water bills. CAPAMA’s indebtedness is now over $400 million pesos.

On a different subject, the director was asked about reports that grey water was being discharged into the bay, contaminating the water at four local beaches. CAPAMA’s director denied that the water utility was releasing untreated water into the ocean. “The problem originates in the brick linings of the sewer pipes, which can collapse, causing leakage into the arroyos, which wash out to the sea.”

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