Feb 28, 2013
Water War Continues
Although the people's ballot initiative against the water lease is off the table, the water war continues. In order for the Lehigh County Authority, aka LCA, to bid on the Allentown lease, their charter must be extended by the County Commissioners. Yesterday, an editorial by Lisa Scheller, outlined the conservative slate's attitude about the lease. They believe that a private company would best suit the needs of county residents, otherwise, county residents would be subsidizing Allentown's pension dilemma through higher rates. Although her points are well taken. because LCA purchases water and sewage service from allentown, down the long road of a fifty year lease, all citizens of Lehigh County could be at the mercy of a private company. Putting aside Allentown's pension situation, I think that in the long run it would better serve county residents if this asset is under local control. Although a private company would have to honor long term contracts that exist between Allentown and LCA, they will pass along the capital improvements, one way or another. All LCA water is looped through the filtration plant in Allentown, regardless of where it originates. LCA has not been the perfect steward of water. Rob Hamill, who has guest posted on this blog, blames them for fostering over development in Lower Macungie, and sewage woes along the Little Lehigh. Never the less, valley residents will have more control and accountability from the local entity LCA, than some multi-national corporate conglomerate headquartered in Europe.