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ACTION ALERT: Stop the proposed private water facility in Abbotsford

The Vancouver Sun reports, “Water, specifically the proposed P3 Stave Lake water project, was the number one topic of the Abbotsford mayoral candidates debate at a packed Matsqui Centennial Auditorium on Wednesday night. …The proposed project – which involves the city entering into a 25-or 30-year contract with a private business to build, partially finance and operate the new water facility – will be decided upon by voters in a referendum during the election on Nov. 19.”

“As incumbent and the sole mayoral candidate to support the P3 project, George Peary repeatedly found himself in the other four candidates line of fire.” The Abbotsford News has reported, “(Mayoral candidate) Meghann Coughlan feels it is dangerous to have water in private control. …Gerda Peachey said a P3 deal is not publicly transparent, because of a corporation’s privacy rights. ….Bruce Banman said he is not against a P3 partnership, but would favour a design/build plan, with operation of the water system remaining in private control.”

That newspaper has also noted, “All of the council incumbents, with the exception of Coun. Patricia Ross, support a public-private partnership… (Candidates) opposed to the plan are Anne Graham, William Aird Flavelle, Daljit Singh Sidhu, Terry Stobbart, Lynn Perrin, Vince Dimanno and Moe Gidda. In favour is Doris Woodman-McMillan. The undecided are Henry Braun, Mark Rushton, Jati Sidhu and Kevin Chapman.”

Take action! Council of Canadians water campaigner Emma Lui has written about how to support Water Watch Mission-Abbotsford (WWMA) in our shared fight against water privatization:

– If you live in Abbotsford, vote ‘No’ on Saturday November 19
– Encourage friends and family members in Abbotsford to vote ‘No’
– ‘Like’ the WWMA Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/WaterWatchMissionAbbotsford
– Follow WWMA on Twitter, @WaterWatchMA
– Watch and share WWMA videos, http://www.youtube.com/user/WaterWatchMissionAbb
– Check out http://www.waterwatchma.ca, specifically their ACT NOW! page, http://www.waterwatchma.ca/act-now/
– Contact WWMA to see if you can help hand out flyers, etc., waterwatchma@live.ca

In late October, Water Watch Mission-Abbotsford launched a new video online titled The Future of Water in Abbotsford. The five-minute video features local residents and their views on this issue, Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow and CUPE president Paul Moist speaking at a public meeting on water and CETA on October 12 in Abbotsford, and includes clips of WWMA spokespersons Lynn Perrin and Janet Chalmers. To watch the video, please go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wIFVUSm9vX0.

On October 21, the Abbotsford Times reported, “In a recent telephone survey of registered voters commissioned by the city, respondents were split as to whether they would vote in favour of the project. Forty-five per cent of those questioned would vote for the plan while 30 per cent said they were opposed.”

To find out more, please see Emma’s blog at http://canadians.org/blog/?p=11487.