Last night, the Newberry Township Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to reject a proposal to privatize their publicly owned sewer system.
The votes came after months of intense community opposition to the deal. The proposals from York Water Company would have caused a massive spike in residential sewer rates.
The news came just after Senator John Kane introduced a bill to repeal Act 12, the 2016 law that created a predatory pricing mechanism that has supercharged water and sewer system privatizations across Pennsylvania.
In response to the news, Food & Water Watch Eastern Pennsylvania organizer Ginny Marcille-Kerslake released the following statement:
“This is an incredible victory for the community members who organized to defeat a corporate takeover that would have raised rates and eliminated local control over a valuable public resource. Giant water corporations have been striking sweetheart deals across Pennsylvania that bolster their profits at the expense of local families and businesses. This victory is democracy in action – a community working together to protect a public resource. It’s time to put a stop to the most egregious corporate takeovers by repealing Act 12 of 2016. Our water and sewer systems should remain as resources managed for the benefit of the people, not distant corporate profiteers.”