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Winnipeg water utility ‘strategic partner’ decision delayed

The Winnipeg Free Press reports that, “Winnipeggers curious to learn the identity of the city’s sewage-treatment ‘strategic partner’ will have to wait a little longer.”

“The creators of Winnipeg’s new water, sewer and garbage utility have delayed announcing which of three consulting firms (Ch2mHill, Veolia or Black & Veatch) will be chosen as the new corporation’s partner in $615 million worth of sewage-treatment upgrades, until the provincial government passes legislation that will allow the utility to proceed.”

“The city hoped to choose its ‘strategic partner’ before the end of 2009. (As of February 13) that is now on hold for at least a month, as the city and province are still trying to hammer out the wording of the legislation that will create the new utility.”

“Utility spokesman Bryan Gray and a spokeswoman for Local Government Minister Ron Lemieux said this week negotiations are going smoothly. But they would not disclose what the negotiations involve.”

“While the city is pursuing the utility to cut down on construction costs, the province wants the corporation to proceed in order to make it easier for Winnipeg to reach service-sharing deals with neighbouring municipalities.”

The full article is at http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/new-utility-partner-decision-delayed-84292187.html.

More on Council of Canadians opposition to the commercialization of Winnipeg’s water utility at http://canadians.org/action/2009/09-July-09.html.