Bristol Sewer System Sale Almost Finalized
Although the official word has yet to come, Bristol Borough will be $50 million richer any day now with the sale of its sewer system to the Bucks County Water and Sewer Authority (BCWSA).
The Borough Sewer Authority and then Council approved the sale days later, with officials from BCWSA on hand to ease potential concerns about rates and rate increases.
““What you’re paying today assuming you use the same amount of water, is the same rate you’re going to pay for the next three year,” Chief Executive Officer of BCWSA Benjamin Jones said at a Council meeting in March.
Rates for borough sewer customers are $81 per quarter for 10,000 gallons and there $7.06 after that. BCWSA rates are $23.68 monthly, with an added charge of $5.88 for an additional allotment said a company official’s.
In recent months Bristol officials have kept a close eye on AQUA Water’s bid to purchase BCWSA which moved forward last month. The proposed sale is for $1.1 billion.
The sale to Aqua, according to WHYY Radio…”would be the largest privatization of a U.S. public wastewater system.”
In June, Council President Ralph DiGuiseppe said Aqua’s desire to purchase BCWSA was public knowledge “for a while now.”
When asked if the sale of BCWSA would impact their purchase of the Bristol system, DiGuiseppe deadpanned, “no we’re in the final stages now and we have a contract signed.”
Borough officials did say they expected the sale to be finalized by the last week of July, which has yet to come to fruition due to scheduling issues, a source with intimate knowledge of the sale sale last week.
When made official the agreement will affect 4200 rate paying residents of the borough. Three years of “rate stability” are included in the deal, Jones said in March.
Borough officials said they were unsure at the time of where the bulk of the proceeds from the sale would go or be spent. Some of the funds- one number tossed around was $250,000. would be used to perform scoreboard upgrades at the Jefferson Avenue baseball field, and provide a healthy cash infusion for the Borough’s thriving recreation program.
Bristol officials said it would consult with its financial advisors what should be done with the bulk of windfall from the sale, and would make that information available to the public.
Still with the Aqua purchase of BCWSA facing a strong push back from elected officials in other municipalities, DiGuiseppe said the timing of the closing the deal is perfect.
“We feel this is the right thing to do for Bristol’s future.”