Monday, August 20, 2012

On Water Deal, Waukesha Moves From 'Hurry Up' To 'Take More Time'

Sometimes, Waukesha wants everyone to move fast on its water diversion application. It's got a 2018 deadline to meet, so:

'Attention City of Milwaukee, DNR, possible water recipient Town of Waukesha (fill in the blank _________) - - we need answers and action right now.'

And sure enough, Oak Creek got a water sale (confidential) proposal to the Waukesha Water Utility on the 16th (in closed session) with the Waukesha Common Council ready to see it tomorrow, but...

Now the Journal Sentinel is reporting that both Oak Creek and potential water selling competitor Racine can have another two weeks to flesh out their offers.

The Waukesha Common Council will not act on terms of a water deal with Oak Creek or Racine at its regular meeting Tuesday.

Oak Creek and Racine have been given two additional weeks to draft their best offers to sell Lake Michigan water to Waukesha, Waukesha Water Utility General Manager Dan Duchniak said...
The commission could schedule a special meeting Sept. 4 to recommend approval of a preliminary deal prior to that evening's common council meeting, Duchniak said.
Deja vu:

I remember when Waukesha said it was moving forward with its application in May, 2009, but canceled a special Council meeting about it later that year. 

And changed consultants late in the game.

Then got its final, final application to the DNR in May, 2010.

Keep these self-inflicted delays in mind when Waukesha goes back to hurry-up mode and jams the DNR, and the Great Lakes Council of Governors (all eight must approve the application if and when the DNR gives a final OK, perhaps next year after environmental review, hearings, etc.), for quick action on the application because Waukesha agreed with the US EPA to meet a legal deadline and provide higher-quality water service by June, 2018.

Then chose the difficult path of qualifying for a Lake Michigan diversion under the new Great Lakes Compact of 2008 with a precedent-setting application after ruling out all other alternatives.

The Waukesha Patch in April, 2011 captured the history of the application's progress:
The application originally stalled in June, and the city hoped for DNR approval by the end of 2010 or early 2011. The delays on the application have cut into an 18-month buffer the city built in as it meets a June 2018 deadline to meet the EPA's mandate.


Boxer said...

Good luck in trying to 'jam' the Great Lakes states for time when the big mess otherwise known as Waukesha's diversion application finally hits their desks.
The 3500+ pages of the application are organized, if you can call it that by Waukesha's original application (and its premature conclusions) with a bunch of material tacked on as addendums, in the thousands of pages. No governor or DNR chief is going to want to waste his/her state's valuable resources reading such a cluster f**k. Maybe that's what the Duchniak Syndicate is counting on.

A. Wag said...

Maybe they're waiting for Sensenbrenner to pinch out a roll of millions in federal funds for their little ditch.

Anonymous said...

I don't believe for one moment that conservative Congressman James Sensenbrenner would pork barrel for Waukesha with the national debt in historical territory.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the update; knew I could count on you and the PE blog to put this in a concise perspective, too.

A. Wag said...

Anonymous 11:04 pm: Wait and watch. I'll bet you'll be shocked. SS Brenner already on board the Good Ship Diversion.

Anonymous said...

2 weeks, hmmmm.

Do yah think that maybe, just maybe, the WWU is hoping that Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett will succumb to outside political pressure and kiss the ring?

Oh, the public humiliation that Scott Walker would win again.