As a spouse of a long-suffering CFPUA employee, I can testify that no employee at CFPUA has gotten a raise in the past 3 years nor will anyone be getting any raises this year. The employees are already working with slashed budgets, even while the costs of supplies (such as chemicals used for wastewater and water treatment) have gone up.
To all who complain about your water bill, I ask... why don't you take a bucket, go to the Cape Fear River, put some of that water in the bucket then use it for your daily water needs? It's free... of course, you'll probably get sick because that water is not treated and, when you start treating it, it will be costly because proper treatment requires costly chemicals, and ozone, and huge basins, and who knows what else... No, a Brita filter won't help you here.
How are you going to deal with your waste products? You can't just dump your poop in the river.
I don't think many of you have any idea of what it takes to run water and wastewater treatment systems and distribution systems, all of which were inherited from the City of Wilmington in decrepit conditions. Some of the infrastructure is so old that if it is not fixed it will slow down whatever sort of economic and residential growth Wilmington will seek to do in the near future.
Any infrastructure improvements CFPUA will have to do at some point are usually funded by bonds. CFPUA, like all other governmental agencies and municipalities, obtains credit based on its bond rating. In order to maintain its bond rating, it has to be able to keep its debts low. It's a sad reality, but if you want to get better infrastructure to serve the needs of people in Wilmington then things need to get done. This means having to procure funds and, in turn, raising rates on customers.
I agree that paying a salary of $60K for a secretary is too much. I disagree that paying the same for a lab supervisor is too much. A lab supervisor is a scientist who must hold the appropriate degrees (at least bachelor's level), licenses and certifications. I don't want some high school reject to do chemical and bacteriological analysis on water... do you?
So, please don't take it out on CFPUA employees. They, like everyone else, haven't had raises for 3 years and won't be getting raises.
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