...the saga ends.
NEW ORLEANS -- Announcing the appointment of a new Sewerage and Water
Board director, Mayor Ray Nagin said Wednesday that the city has
scuttled all plans to privatize the system.
Marcia St. Martin, who has served as interim
director of the board since 2003, was selected as part of a nationwide
The announcement ends years of debate over which entity
could best handle a crumbling infrastructure and federally mandated
repairs. Three groups -- U.S. Filter, United Water and a group of
Sewerage and Water Board managers -- were vying for the contract,
which would have been worth $1 billion.
The water board is responsible for providing
residents with clean drinking water, performing wastewater treatment
and disposal and maintaining one of the most extensive and complex
drainage systems in the country, Nagin's office said.