Sunday, March 17, 2013

Water Board Approves Historic Plan to Convert DWSD into an Independent Water Authority

On March 13, 2013, the Board of Water Commissioners voted 6-0 to approve a resolution moving forward with the plan outlined by the Root Cause Committee's Final Report to convert DWSD into a regional water authority. 

DWSD's Matt Schenk presented the plan to the Board of Water Commissioners, which discussed the plan and asked questions for nearly 2 hours before voting to approve it.  Chairperson James Fausone said during his comments that inaction was not option under the circumstances and that the Water Board must pursue this dramatic course of action in order to protect DWSD,  its customers, and bond holders.   

Commissioner Bryan Williams abstained from voting due to his personal concerns about the plan, and a lack of time to study the details. From comments made by Williams and other during the meeting, it appears that Commissioners received the Root Cause Committee's March 13th report only a few hour(s) before meeting to approve the plan to convert DWSD into an independent Authority.  

A vote on the the Root Cause Committee's plan was required so that Director Sue McCormick could incorporate the plan (or not) into the Director's Final Compliance Report, which was to be filed with U.S. District Judge Sean Cox by March 15, 2013.

The plan to convert DWSD into an independent authority is subject to approval by U.S. District Judge Sean Cox, who has scheduled a Status Conference on March 21, 2013 at 10:00 a.m.  The plan must also pass muster with Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, who was appointed March 14th Governor Snyder. Its too soon to know whether the EM will support or oppose the plan.  

For more about DWSD Update, click here.      

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