Pittsburgh, PA - The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority’s (PWSA) Board of Directors will consider a resolution pledging to maintain public ownership of Pittsburgh’s water and sewer infrastructure, support continued investment in large-scale green infrastructure projects, and invest in workforce development and training strategies to create job opportunities within PWSA’s service area. The vote will take place at tomorrow's regularly scheduled monthly board meeting at 10 am.
“This action reaffirms our commitment to maintaining public control and ownership of one of Pittsburgh’s most essential assets. This water system is not for sale, and we have every intention to continue and expand upon the progress made by PWSA over the last few years,” said PWSA Board Chair Paul Leger.
The pledge was created by the Our Water, Our Rivers Campaign (OWORC), a coalition of local organizations formed to advocate for safe, affordable, publicly controlled water and environmental justice. OWORC organizers have called on local, county, state, and federal elected officials to take similar pledges. Mayor William Peduto signed onto the pledge in March 2019.
Organizer for the Our Water, Our Rivers Campaign Aly Shaw said, "For several years now, the Our Water, Our Rivers Campaign has been working with ratepayers who demand a publicly-owned and publicly-operated water system in Pittsburgh. We are gratified to see the Mayor and now the PWSA Board listen to those demands and commit to protecting our drinking water by ensuring it remains owned and operated by the people of Pittsburgh."
In addition to the pledge, a commitment to public ownership of Pittsburgh’s water and sewer infrastructure appears in the proposed cooperation agreement to govern the financial and administrative relationship between the City and PWSA. The draft agreement is currently under consideration by the PWSA Board and City Council.
A copy of the pledge can be found here.
The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA) is the largest combined water, sewer and stormwater authority in Pennsylvania, serving 300,000 consumers throughout the City of Pittsburgh and surrounding areas.