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Water, sewer sale clears another hurdle

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The Indianapolis Board of Waterworks gave its blessings Friday to the sale of the city’s water and wastewater utilities to Citizens Energy Group.

That leaves the City-County Council and the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission to vote whether or not to approve the $1.9 billion deal proposed by Mayor Greg Ballard last March.

The deal appeared threatened earlier this week when the measure fell short of the necessary votes among waterworks board members who either voted against it or abstained to obtain more information. Board chairman Marvin Scott reconvened the board, which approved it by a 4-1 tally. The lone vote opposing the sale was from Frank Short, a Democrat, and Washington Township Trustee.

The sale could wind up providing up to $425 million for use in city infrastructure improvements.  Citizens, which provides gas, steam and chilled water service to residents in Marion County, says combining the utilities under its umbrella will provide a number of efficiencies and keep rates lower than if the utilities remained in city hands.

 


 

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  • IT IS NOT A TAX INCREASE
    THE TAXPAYERS ARE GETTING SCREWED WE GET TO PAY BACK INTEREST THRU HIGHER WATER AND SEWER RATES INSTEAD OF THRU HIGHER COIT OR PROPERTY TAXES... WE LOSE A FEDERAL TAX DEDUCTION.... SO IT IS THE DOUBLE SCREW JOB SINCE THE ASSETS ARE BEING LEVERED UP IN THE SALE TO BUILD CURBS AND SIDEWALKS WHICH WOULD ORDINARILLY BE IN OUR TAXES.... I COULD SEE LEVERING THOSE ASSETS IF THE MONEY STAYS WITH CITIZENS FOR WATER AND SEWER INFRASTRUCTURE BUILDOUT.... CITY LEADERS ARE CROOKS.
  • Scott betrays Tea Partiers
    GOP perennial congressional candidate Marvin Scott has been shamelessly pandering for the Tea Party vote. Today. as Chair of the Waterworks Board, he just voted for the largest tax increase in Indianapolis history - that water for his tea bags just got immensely expensive!

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  1. to mention the rest of Molly's experience- she served as Communications Director for the Indianapolis Department of Public Works and also did communications for the state. She's incredibly qualified for this role and has a real love for Indianapolis and Indiana. Best of luck to her!

  2. Shall we not demand the same scrutiny for law schools, med schools, heaven forbid, business schools, etc.? How many law school grads are servers? How many business start ups fail and how many business grads get low paying jobs because there are so few high paying positions available? Why does our legislature continue to demean public schools and give taxpayer dollars to charters and private schools, ($171 million last year), rather than investing in our community schools? We are on a course of disaster regarding our public school attitudes unless we change our thinking in a short time.

  3. I agree with the other reader's comment about the chunky tomato soup. I found myself wanting a breadstick to dip into it. It tasted more like a marinara sauce; I couldn't eat it as a soup. In general, I liked the place... but doubt that I'll frequent it once the novelty wears off.

  4. The Indiana toll road used to have some of the cleanest bathrooms you could find on the road. After the lease they went downhill quickly. While not the grossest you'll see, they hover a bit below average. Am not sure if this is indicative of the entire deal or merely a portion of it. But the goals of anyone taking over the lease will always be at odds. The fewer repairs they make, the more money they earn since they have a virtual monopoly on travel from Cleveland to Chicago. So they only comply to satisfy the rules. It's hard to hand public works over to private enterprise. The incentives are misaligned. In true competition, you'd have multiple roads, each build by different companies motivated to make theirs more attractive. Working to attract customers is very different than working to maximize profit on people who have no choice but to choose your road. Of course, we all know two roads would be even more ridiculous.

  5. The State is in a perfect position. The consortium overpaid for leasing the toll road. Good for the State. The money they paid is being used across the State to upgrade roads and bridges and employ people at at time most of the country is scrambling to fund basic repairs. Good for the State. Indiana taxpayers are no longer subsidizing the toll roads to the tune of millions a year as we had for the last 20 years because the legislature did not have the guts to raise tolls. Good for the State. If the consortium fails, they either find another operator, acceptable to the State, to buy them out or the road gets turned back over to the State and we keep the Billions. Good for the State. Pat Bauer is no longer the Majority or Minority Leader of the House. Good for the State. Anyway you look at this, the State received billions of dollars for an assett the taxpayers were subsidizing, the State does not have to pay to maintain the road for 70 years. I am having trouble seeing the downside.

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