Tri-County Exec. Board OKs stance on water company buyout talks

Aug 5, 2013

A board with the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission says it’s staying out of any possible water company buyout talks in Peoria or Pekin. Peoria Public Radio’s Alex Rusciano reports: 

 The move comes after news last month that a group part of Focus Forward C-I could re-visit the possibility of a water company buyout. A letter from the Water Resource Action Team says it will not take a position on the issue. But the letter says the team is willing to help with economic development if Peoria or Pekin’s city councils decide to further study the issue.  Commission chair Larry Whitaker says Tri-County wants its staff to avoid discussing a buyout, but they will stay on the water team:

 “The Water Action Team has one controversial issue, and a lot of other good things,” Whitaker says.

 “I mean I’m concerned with us being fair with our staff that’s okay we want you involved there but oh no, no, we don't want you over here.  So we have to be really clear that we’re getting good concise direction there.”

 The Peoria City Council has voted down the idea to pursue a buyout of Illinois-American-Water in the past. Whitaker says the commission has usually focused on planning projects rather than endorsing policy decisions.