This afternoon, Regina Water Watch delivered 24,224 signatures demanding a referendum on the proposed public-private partnership (P3) wastewater treatment plant.
CKOM reports this hour, “Roughly 35 people representing the Regina Water Watch group marched into the lobby at City Hall Thursday afternoon to deliver a petition three months in the making. After hundreds of hours of work the group says it collected roughly 24,000 signatures, delivered to the City Clerk in bundles of around 500.”
“(They are opposed to the plan) that would see the city select a private company to finance, design, build, operate, and maintain the facility for 30 years. The group is fundamentally against a private company having any level of control over the public water system, even sewage treatment.” Also, “(Regina City) Council elected to pursue a P3 model because it was the only means of securing federal government support for the project. The Conservatives, through the arms-length P3 Canada Fund, approved up to $58.5 million for construction but RWW says a financial analysis conducted at the behest of the CUPE union shows the P3 structure will actually cost $60 million more because of higher borrowing costs.”
The article adds, “The City Clerk has a month to verify the petition. If it is deemed valid Council will have nine months to hold a vote.” That means the municipal referendum would need to happen at some point prior to March 20, 2014.
The Council of Canadians Regina chapter is a member of Regina Water Watch and has been very active in the campaign to collect the signatures needed to require a referendum. Last week, the national office also e-mailed all Council of Canadians members in Regina to encourage them to sign the petition. Just two weeks before the petition was launched, Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow and CUPE president Paul Moist spoke against the P3 proposal at a public forum in Regina.
For more, please read:
NEWS: 23,995 signatures against P3 wastewater project to be presented at Regina City Hall today
UPDATE: P3 wastewater plant in Regina could cost $61 million more than public option
NEWS: Regina Water Watch launches petition for referendum on P3 wastewater plant
NEWS: Barlow & Moist speak against P3 wastewater project in Regina