Grijalva Questions Contract Inked by Fishy Company

Congressman Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), the Ranking Member of the House Natural Resources Committee, is pushing for an investigation into a $300 million contract awarded to Whitefish Energy -- a small Montana-based energy company -- to help restore Puerto Rico’s electrical grid. Whitefish is a two-year-old company that had only two employees when Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico last month. As of Monday, it said it had 280 employees in Puerto Rico, mostly contractors. The company is based in the small Montana hometown of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. Zinke’s office told WaPo that he knows the company’s CEO and that one of his sons worked at the firm as a summer job. But the agency and company executives say Zinke had no role in the company’s Puerto Rico contract. Grijalva said his staff is working to bring Zinke back to the Hill for a meeting to discuss Whitefish Energy, the agency’s Antiquities Act review, staffing, and other topics. On Tuesday, Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY) sent a letter demanding that both FEMA and the Financial Oversight and Management Board for Puerto Rico provide diligent oversight of federal contracts awarded to rebuild the island post-hurricane. More here.

Tiffany D. Cross