SAWS Hails Vista Ridge Change

We’re hearing more about a big change for what has become a quite controversial SAWS project.

Mayor Ivy Taylor first unveiled the change for the Vista Ridge Pipeline plan during her State of the City Address Tuesday. That will see Garney Construction buy out the majority of financially-troubled Abengoa’s stake in the project.

“They (Abengoa) did invest a lot of money up until this point” SAWS President and CEO Robert Puente told KTSA News, adding “They’ll be able to retain that interest as far as an equity ownership… but it’s only 20%.”

SAWS Trustees could vote on the change within the next month. Punte said the utility has a long and positive track record when it comes to working with Kansas City-based Garney.

“It’s not only a good project in that sense that we’ll have a very stable partner, but also a good project in the sense that the price will actually come in lower. The price of the water will probably come in lower” Puente said.

“The interest rates are much lower. Garney understands what we need and want as far as workmanship, materials, the type of job that they do” Puente added.

Even if a change is approved, Puente said the overall guidelines for the project remain the same.

“The original contract City Council voted for in October of 2014 stays in place” Puente said.

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