Thursday, October 27, 2011

Comment on Carlyle

Posted on Thu, Oct 27, 2011 at 4:00 AM

There has been a lot of coverage regarding the proposed sale of Mountain Water to the Carlyle Group, and many local water users have told the Public Service Commission and the Missoula City Council how they feel about the deal.

While water users appreciate Mayor John Engen and the Clark Fork Coalition’s efforts on behalf of our water resources, some feel that their agreement with the Carlyle Group is not strong enough to ensure that Missoula will have a clear opportunity to purchase the utility from Carlyle in the future, especially since the agreement is not legally binding.

The PSC will make its decision on the proposed sale in the coming weeks. Please write them immediately and ask that they put strong, enforceable conditions on the proposed sale should they decide to approve it. Provisions such as a “right of first refusal” for the city and/or a Missoula utility co-operative and “ring-fencing” requirements, as proposed by the Montana Consumer Council, are absolutely necessary to protect our community. Missoula water users want solid assurance that the ownership of the Mountain Water utility can be brought home in the next five years.

To access the PSC online comment form, go to: psc.mt.gov/consumers/ comments/

Susan Stubblefield

Missoula

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