In parts of our service area, our water and waste water system is in critical need of repair or replacement. The location of this North Kerr Avenue sewer system collapse that led to the excavation of the area that ultimately revealed today’s compromised water line is only steps away from a large waste water system sink hole that closed all lanes of South Kerr just two years ago, and it is around the corner from Princess Place Drive at 30th Street and Market Street at 23rd where significant water and sewer system failures have recently shut down traffic and service. The system in this area is in need of repair, and it is being done so as systematically and cost-consciously as possible. But these are not the only areas in need of attention, and for 7 months the Board deliberated on just which projects carried such risk that they could not be pushed off of the fiscal year 2012 Capital Improvements Program and into future years so as to have as little an impact on your rates as possible. An additional $12million in project needs was identified, but ultimately deferred to future years to reduce the necessary rate increases to pay for them. And the rate increases you’ve paid so far were all part of the organizations documents and open meetings since 2007; and all increases thus far have been to pay back $187million in borrowed money for projects identified before CFPUA was CFPUA. And yes while these are big projects occurring simultaneously, of the likes that most of us with never see again in our lifetimes, they are necessary projects. The timing cannot be avoided and the improvements to the waste water and drinking water systems are essential. Finally to clarify, CFPUA only bills for Wilmington storm water and trash services. The management, provision of and increases to these services are performed by the City of Wilmington.
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