Cost of water going up - will Des Moines regional utility help?

DES MOINES, Iowa - With the cost of water going up over the next few years, talks about creating a regional water utility are moving into the next phase:  figuring out what it would cost. 

"Within five years we need to be producing a new plant."  Water Works Chair Susan Huppert tells WHO Radio News.  "It would be best if Des Moines Water Works is not the only one making that decision, but if we bring all of our partners in."  

Water Works is currently owned by the citizens of Des Moines, but ongoing discussions with other local cities have been exploring a regional water utility.  

Huppert says a financial evaluation will be done now to weigh the costs and benefits of creating a regional water utility.    

"It's about quantity, it's about quality, it's about price."  Des Moines Mayor Frank Cownie tells WHO Radio News.

He says local communities interested in creating a regional water utility with Des Moines should get the important financial study by the end of this year.

"The consultant has been engaged to work on this into the third quarter of 2018."  Cownie says. "So, we'll see what the risks are, what the assets are; not only the costs but also what the revenue looks like."  

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