Economists Slam Powell Pipeline Repayment Sham
A group of Utah economists released a shocking analysis demonstrating water rates will have to be increased at least 500% to repay the debt from building the $3.2 billion Lake Powell Pipeline to Utah taxpayers. The analysis comes on the heels of the state's announcement they will submit their application for federal approval for the multibillion-dollar pipeline on December 1st.
Amazingly, the state has no real plan for repayment, outside of lip service and media hype. In a letter sent to the governor signed by 22 economists from Utah's three largest universities, the state’s top economic experts explain the pipeline would burden every man, woman and child in Washington County with as much as $781 of debt every year for 50 years.
The analysis also documented cheaper sources of water which pipeline advocates are ignoring, as confirmed in the 2015 Legislative Audit of the Utah Division of Water Resources. These include eliminating property tax subsidies for water, converting water formerly used by agriculture to municipal uses and more aggressive water conservation efforts.
The state should not submit its application for federal approval of the pipeline without first presenting the public a repayment plan documenting exactly how Utah taxpayers will get their money back.
Call or email Governor Herbert and tell him to heed the economist’s warning and shelve the project before generations of Utahns are burdened with unnecessary debt.
Utah Governor’s Office, 801-538-1000
Email Governor Herbert HERE.