Aqua’s background with CWA
In May, Aqua extended an offer to acquire the assets of Chester Water Authority (CWA) and requested that Aqua and the CWA board enter into a conversation to fully vet this concept and its potential benefits for the customers, employees and other stakeholders of both utilities. On May 18, CWA rejected Aqua’s proposal without dialogue or discussion with Aqua. Since that time, there has been misleading information about: 1) the potential rates that would be charged to current CWA customers, and 2) the continued employment of current CWA employees. Marc Lucca, president of Aqua Pennsylvania, provided additional information at the CWA board meeting on Nov. 3 when he stated that, if Aqua were to acquire CWA, Aqua will hold current CWA customer rates constant at the current CWA level for 10 years from closing AND will offer employment for all CWA employees.
Aqua continues to be interested in entering into a conversation with the authority board in which we will come to understand how we can collectively ensure that all CWA customers’ water supply services remain safe, reliable and affordable into the future.
Who owns CWA?
There is a disagreement about who owns CWA. From before World War II until recent times, the city of Chester has owned and operated the water utility. During that time, CWA has grown to its current size to serve customers in the city of Chester and the counties of Delaware and Chester. Abruptly in 2012, legislation was passed in Harrisburg that dramatically changed the governance of CWA. With that, a new board of directors was created with a required membership from the three entities (city of Chester, Delaware County and Chester County). It has been argued that the assets of CWA remain under the ownership of the city, but the governance of CWA is under the control of the new board. Some have suggested that this issue could end up in a protracted legal dispute. While Aqua is not involved in this dispute between the city and CWA, a sale to Aqua could be a solution providing benefits to all concerned constituencies.
How would a CWA customer benefit from Aqua?
Aqua has the expert technical and operational resources to address increasingly stringent regulations and complex matters such as lead, toxic algal blooms and contamination. Customers would further benefit from Aqua’s larger SE Pennsylvania infrastructure by providing additional Aqua water supplies in case of transmission main disruptions or drought, improved ability to recover from a natural disaster due to multistate resources, in-house asset management and capital project prioritization, continued infrastructure investment, increased physical and cybersecurity programs, and regulation by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission. Aqua’s customer service is reviewed by the PA PUC and held to objective regulatory standards.
With more than 130 years in the water and wastewater industry, Aqua has the expertise to meet the needs of large water and wastewater systems like CWA’s. Read on to learn more about your challenges and how Aqua can help.
Water treatment and distribution
Aqua Pennsylvania’s professional team maintains and improves water systems through all phases of design, building and operation. This includes:
Complying with regulations
Aqua Pennsylvania respects the environment and our customers. We proactively manage compliance with federal and state regulatory agencies:
Aqua Pennsylvania provides round-the-clock customer service – based in the United States – to assist with questions, service requests and outages – 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. This includes:
Continuous system monitoring and preventive maintenance
Aqua Pennsylvania provides remote system monitoring services and preventive maintenance:
Aqua Pennsylvania provides emergency maintenance to ensure reliability and quality, day and night:
Engineering, asset management and capital planning
Aqua Pennsylvania’s professional and licensed staff addresses immediate infrastructure needs and assists with strategic plans to maintain, enhance and expand water and sewer systems. This includes: