blue mulberry bag Neighboring towns demand Trenton Water Works get with the state
If I were a Trenton resident, I be infuriated at what certainly appears to be the mismanagement of the Trenton Water Works. After all, this is a jewel of the city, and I mean that almost literally, as the operations there bring in roughly $12 million in profit a year.
I know that the figure based on a recent letter written by Michelle Putnam, the acting assistant commissioner of Water Resource Management for state Department of Environmental Protection, and acquired, via an OPRA request, by city resident and blogger Kevin Moriarty. He also picked up a few letters from Bob Martin, the NJDEP commissioner.
These letters paint a worrisome picture of the Trenton Water Works, as I outlined Friday, with Martin claiming the city is running the operation with approximately 33 percent of the needed staff.
The letters go on to say the NJDEP has gone from asking to demanding the city hire an outside firm to handle both the staffing issues as well as the day to day management of TWW, at least for the short term, and possibly/probably for an additional 10 years.
So yeah. If I were a resident, I be peeved. After all, if there all these problems, and an outside firm has to come in, you have to assume the profit margins will dip.
And if I lived in a community that served by TWW, I feel duped. It wasn public knowledge concerning the staffing woes, and it certainly wasn public knowledge the state DEP was telling the city to turn operations over to an outside company.
needs to put their foot down, said Jeff Plunkett, the director of the Department of Health,
Recreation, Senior Veterans Services in Hamilton. it the DEP that would have to implement it. It was written on November 3, and ordered the city to award an emergency contract to whichever outside vendor was chosen by a November 30 deadline.
Clearly, that deadline has passed. It unknown if the deadline was extended.
The letter closed thusly: the city fails to follow through immediately on this emergency contract, DEP would be left with no choice but to seriously consider pursuing administrative or legal action to ensure the protection of public health for the City residents and the customers in the surrounding communities supplied with drinking water by TWW. (Hours after I spoke with Plunkett, he called me back to inform Mayor Kelly Yaede had reached out to Trenton Mayor Eric Jackson, and Jackson told Yaede he planned on sending an invitation out to all the mayors of the towns affected by the woes at TWW, seeking to get everyone on the same page as to what the deal is. I applaud Jackson for doing this, though it does feel a little late in the game.)
In the meantime, I think I might go shopping for some bottled water. Fact: I a Trenton Water Works customer, and I been drinking from the tap for years. So has my wife and children. I would liked to know there was only a third of the staff needed, would liked to know the DEP kept telling the city to do something about it.
not insensitive to the problems they having over there, but it has to get done, said James McManimon, Ewing business administrator, another town serviced by TWW. the same time, every time there a problem, they can blame it on staff. I know Mayor Jackson is trying, and there are some great people at the water works. It a dilemma.
just something that can constantly fail, he said. it lack of management, or the infrastructure, it all needs to be addressed and the sooner that happens the better because the credibility of the service continues to decrease on an almost daily basis. Every day that passes without word of the hiring of an outside vendor that knows what it doing concerning public drinking water is another day of trust lost in the system.