Taking the temperature of a community is important when making decisions about money. Sometimes, you have to back off your plan when you know you are heading into a vipers nest.

WAPA’s recent announcement that they were considering raises for its managerial and confidential staff was rubbing salt in the wounds of the Virgin Islands public. Somehow, just in time, someone took a look at the thermometer reading of V. I. citizens.

The Virgin Islands has been battered by power problems for decades. This quality of life problem has destroyed businesses with outrageously high costs and unreliability. Virgin Islanders have consistently been abused by power failures, mismanagement of this utility, and lack of accountability in fiascos ranging from wiring millions of dollars to scammers, to non-payments by government agencies. Simply put, most Virgin Islanders feel that those who run this agency could do better.

Raises are usually tied to job performance. In the real world, you have to do a good job for consideration of a raise. In the world of fantasy, perhaps it’s the opposite. Taking raises off the table in times of fiscal crisis and poor performance was the smartest move the WAPA board has made in decades.

— Maria Ferreras is a longtime St. Thomas resident and community volunteer. She can be reached at maria@dailynews.vi.