Prichard water bill could rise by 30% with a decision next month

September 12, 2023 by No Comments

The United Concerned Citizens of Prichard community group is urging all Prichard Water customers residing in Chickasaw and Prichard to participate in the Prichard Water Board meeting scheduled for Tuesday, September 12th at 3 p.m., taking place at 125 East Clark Street in Prichard, Alabama (ZIP: 36610).

The group expresses apprehension regarding an impending 30-year contract negotiation between the Prichard Water Utility and the INFRAMARK Company. They assert that if this contract receives approval from the Prichard Water Board, it could result in a substantial 30% increase in rates for Prichard Water customers in both Chickasaw and Prichard.

In a recent development in August, PWWSB (Prichard Water, Sewer, and Gas Board) encountered a default on a $55 million bond with Synovus Bank, and the water infrastructure has been deteriorating, leading to significant water loss issues. INFRAMARK, an organization specializing in water operations, collaborated with the investment firm KKR to establish Prichard Water Partners. Notably, it was the sole company to respond to the water board’s request for proposals concerning a concession agreement.

Consequently, Synovus Bank has sought legal action by requesting a judge to appoint a receiver to oversee operations, with a hearing scheduled for October 10th. Irrespective of the entity in charge of managing the system, Underwood, a representative of the group, anticipates that customers will experience an inevitable rise in their water rates. He explains that this additional revenue is essential for sustaining operations and addressing the existing debt obligations.

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