Sunday, August 16, 2020

Big gov't OK's 'crazy' low-cost Federal millions in Waukesha water diversion funding

Lake Michigan water will flow out of the Great Lakes basin 

Lake Michigan gale 
through a sweet Federal earmark for Waukesha.
For Waukesha, this federal loan will save the city $1 million a year in costs tied to new Lake Michigan water system
For Dan Duchniak, general manager of Waukesha Water Utility, the most noteworthy element is what this means for ratepayers who have already started footing the bill for Lake Michigan water via the city of Milwaukee. 
"This is going to save the residents a lot of money," Duchniak said in advance of Wednesday's presentation, noting the anticipated interest charge of close to 1%. "It's so low it's crazy."  
The precedent-setting $286 million diversion plan has unfolded over years, is far behind schedule and way above initial cost estimates as low as $78 million - some history, here - and only recently cleared yet another hurdle - this time with New Berlin.

Meanwhile, Waukesha water activist Steve Edlund continues to raise objections to the project's approvals by state agencies.

See page seven of this newsletter just out from the Waukesha Environmental Action League.

It's fashionable on the right to call government spending 'bailouts' or 'socialism' or wasteful, or election-year-incumbency handouts, whatever.

I doubt you will hear any of that from the situational ideologues. 

For the record: I've been writing about the diversion possibility for more than 14 years, here - that's before I began this blog which has scores of post about it accessible through key words in the index box at the upper left.
Waukesha signaled its diversion intentions to Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle when Waukesha Mayor Carol Lombardi sent him an issues background packet, report and cover letter on August 23, 2003 that began:
"The City of Waukesha and the Waukesha Water Utility are beginning a process to obtain permission to withdraw 20 million gallons of water per day from Lake Michigan."
While no application has yet been filed, the water utility hired a consulting team in March 2004 led by The Cadmus Group, an Illinois firm, and paid it $126,000 in two phases, records show.
Cadmus titled its winning contract proposal: "Development of a Strategy and Great Lakes Water Application for Approval by the Great Lakes Governors."


Joshua Skolnick said...

It was also interesting how the reactionary “small government” ideologues twisted themselves into pretzels to justify the Fox Con Job of massive government money to a foreign corporation, that too having to do with Lake Michigan diversions.

Unknown said...

The Federal Government is the sole currency issuer. The government doesn't need revenue. It just needs resources to purchase. #LearnMzmT

Anonymous said...

If the PSC approves the connection intended for New Berlin to tap into Waukesha's transmission main, the pipeline would serve 2 public water systems but be paid for by just Waukesha ratepayers. I wonder if Waukesha's Federal loan specifies this? New Berlin ratepayers are getting a transmission main for free and worth tens of millions of dollars.