Thursday, October 2, 2014

Great Lakes Water Authority FORUM on Oct. 2 @ 7 PM

Hi All,

UPDATE: 10/18/14    Robert J. Daddow appointed to GLWA for Oakland County.  
Read a nice article at this link:

Great Lakes Water Authority Informational Forum

Please note that an informational forum on the Great Lakes Water Authority will be held:  
October 2nd at 7:00 PM at the Bloomfield Township Hall, 4200 Telegraph Road. 
Chief Deputy Oakland County Executive Jerry Poisson will speak about water and sewer rates and how it will affect our communities.

Other forums are being held in other communities on different dates.
For more information, go to the Great Lakes Water Authority website.

For information about the  local  BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP water/sewer department

This blog content is from an informational article I saw dated 9/18/14.  Some information MAY have changed since then.  I have NOT reviewed their website.  But this blog will provide a quick look at the issue and perhaps generate some questions you may want to ask at this forum.  

Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA) Governance:  6 member board appointed by:
Mayor of Detroit  - 2;
County Executive of Oakland - 1
County Executive of Macomb - 1
County Executive of Wayne -1
Governor - 1

MY Question:  Will there be any guarantee that the APPOINTEES will have an excellent understanding of the water and sewer operation to make the necessary voting decisions ?  

The appointees will serve at the executive's pleasure.  IF you are not happy with the decisions being made by the GLWA board, you get to complain to your county elected officials.

rate setting
operating budget
capital improvement plan
selection of CEO
board compensation
procurement policies
lease agreement with city
debt issuance

Revenue for the Great Lakes Water Authority  will come ONLY from water and sewer services billed to the local communities providing services to you.

The GLWA will make a Lease payment (Control Premium) of $50 million from "common-to-all" revenues EACH year to a capital improvements fund held by the GLWA for the purpose of operating, maintaining and remediating issues associated with the water and sewer pipes and other infrastructure in the city
MY Note:  This did not say infrastucture in the suburbs

Other language reported for this lease payment is the sole purpose of funding Detroit's water and sewer capital needs and/or related debt service. 
MY Note:  I read that suburban local governments will add to your bill for capital improvements?  Will the GLWA lease payments help the suburbs with any capital improvements?

Lease payment estimated split:  Detroit:  one third  and Wholesale (suburban) customers: two-thirds.

The GLWA board will cap annual increases in water and sewer billings to an average of 4% a year for ten years.

MY Note:  However, YOUR bill may be different from other communities because of charges for local operating, maintenance and local capital needs incurred by YOUR local system. You need to ask your local government about what costs THEY add and what, if any, capital needs are required.

October 10, 2014 seems to be the deadline to determine whether or not all parties want to participate in the GLWA.   However, if just ONE county and the Detroit City Council vote in favor of this GLWA, then the GLWA will start to exist....with operations beginning 200 days later.
If any county does NOT pass the articles of incorporation, the governor will appoint a representative for that county and the GLWA board has the option of setting rates HIGHER for any county that opts NOT to participate in the GLWA.

WRAP:  Water Residential Affordability Program will be funded from the "common-to-all" cash flows.  It will be 0.5 % of revenues ($4.5 million in FY-2015) for low-income Detroit and wholesale (Suburban) residents.   Program criteria to be determined. 

MY Question:  What if more homes qualify and the cost is more than 0.5% of revenues? What if most of the homes are in Detroit?  Does that mean the suburbs are subsidizing Detroit water/sewer customers?

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