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Town Continues to Consider Buying Water Company

The Town of Milford is continuing to looking into whether it makes financial sense to purchase the privately-owned Milford Water Company and run it as an agency or department within the town government.

Town Counsel Gerald Moody told the Town Crier this month that he does not plan to ask Town Meeting Members for more funds for consultants at this coming's May's Annual Town Meeting beyond the $200,000 already appropriated. He was tight-lipped about making any other comments about the issue.

"We're negotiating with the water company and that continues on," Moody told the Finance Committee last September, in preparation for last's fall's Special Town Meeting. "The best result will be a supportable amount that we can bring to Town Meeting," he continued. "We're continuing to negotiate. The water company recognizes its obligation to negotiate and the discussions that are ongoing are in good faith," Moody told the Finance Committee last September. At that time, he voiced hopes that the negotiations would result in a purchase price for the utility coming to Town Meeting Members this year.

"If we don't reach agreement [on the price], then we go to the DPU [the state Department of Public Utilities] and the DPU sets the price," Moody told the Finance Committee members last year.

The town began looking into whether it made financial sense to buy the Milford Water Company after the DPU's 2013 decision to grant the utility a 54 percent rate hike. According to Moody, the idea would be used use the current water uses revenues to pay for a 20-year or 30-year bond – essentially, acquiring the company without spending additional taxpayer revenues.




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