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Whitefish Energy is ‘standing down’ in Puerto Rico over nonpayment of $83 Million

The small Montana energy firm helping Puerto Rico rebuild its battered electrical grid is “standing down” over nonpayment, the company said Monday.

In a statement, Whitefish Energy Holdings said that outstanding invoices with Puerto Rico’s power utility have “made it impossible to continue.”

Citing a letter sent to Puerto Rican officials, The Associated Press reported that the government owes Whitefish more than $83 million.

The island canceled its $300 million contract with the company last month after The Washington Post reported, among other things, that it had only two full-time employees when Hurricane Maria tore across Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico Power Authority Moves to Cancel Whitefish Energy Contract 2:15

There were also questions about the relationship between the Montana-based energy firm and Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, who is from the town of Whitefish, Montana.

Puerto Rico power company spokesman Carlos Monroig told the A.P. that both sides are in talks to reach an agreement to satisfy everyone involved.