Saturday, March 02, 2013

Filter out the mud, and you can see through the water

I feel obliged to point out that the greatest leap in local government transparency here was put online by the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority today:

Kudos.  Yes, I know even fully disclosed it is harder to read than standard Meänkieli, but still.

So I know the workers are kind of mad at the fee being paid to the management company Veolia, a company whose parent is the global French company, to run things down there.  But I have to say it has taken decades to get that modicum of public disclosure.  Worth every penny.

and yes..  for those who do not realize it, the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer System is being run by a French owned company.  One of those things that must drive Josh Wander a bit nuts (hey, is he running for mayor as well?).  But I have to tell you, ever since being on the Paris Sewer Tour, I have no doubt the French know sewers.  Now if the PWSA organizes a Pittsburgh Sewer Tour, we really may be on to something. I'll be the first to sign up.

And if you really dislike the idea of the French managing things down there, I also bet they are not outsourcing their billing to Thailand Malaysia, either. Sorry, Thailand on the brain these days for some reason.

That being said. It's scary stuff.  If the details are too much, some of the summary stats are scary in themselves.  The super summary: lots and lots of debt. If you don't read it, a summary graph was in the publication American Water Intelligence last fall. (and NO, I do not read it either.)

and unfortunately, none of that is likely to prevent a downgrade of some of the PWSA's debt in the near term. Update: I may have been wrong and at least some debt is expected to get a slight upgrade.


Anonymous Let Them Eat Matzohs! said...

Please don't give Wander any ideas. I shudder to think about the hours he could spend discussing the stolen gun reporting ordinance.

Tuesday, March 05, 2013 1:08:00 PM  
Anonymous MH said...

Apparently, Wander is running.

Monday, March 11, 2013 1:24:00 PM  

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