CHICAGO, May 16, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- As our nation struggles to repair, maintain, and upgrade its water and sewer infrastructure, public-private partnerships are gaining traction as a strategy for filling the gaps. Water and wastewater public-private partnerships have proven they can deliver solutions to US cities and municipalities, and fix infrastructure in less time and at no or much less cost to taxpayers or ratepayers.
As a result, many cities and municipalities in over 40 states across the United States are partnering with companies to offer affordable water and sewer service line insurance or warranty programs to homeowners to help protect them from the unexpected costs of service line repairs.
Most homeowners are not aware that they are responsible for all of the costs associated with repairing damaged water and sewer service lines that run from the exterior of their house to the municipal service lines in the street.
Unfortunately, when a water or sewer line fails or breaks unexpectedly, the repairs can cost a homeowner thousands of dollars out-of-pocket, which many cannot afford. The cost to locate, excavate and repair these underground service lines can have a serious impact to a homeowners finances. These repairs are not covered by most homeowners' insurance policies and can cost thousands of dollars.
In the case of sewer lines, the damaged lines can cause sewage to leak into the soil, creating a significant risk to the environment and underground drinking water aquifers. In some communities, pollution or sewage from broken sewer lines can leak into rivers, lakes, and the oceans.
Additionally, water line leaks not only waste one of our most precious resources (i.e…drinking water), but damage property and cost taxpayers money as a result of lost revenue for utilities.
With most public-private service line protection programs, homeowners may voluntary sign-up for insurance or warranty protection against normal wear and tear on water and sewer lines, which is not covered under most traditional homeowners policies. The insurance or warranty provides for the repair the portion of the water or sewer line that runs between the exterior of the home to the public utility connection.
In most cases, if lines break, leak or clog, homeowners can call the water and sewer line protection provider directly and they will repair the line using local, licensed contractors who are familiar with City codes and can ensure a timely response.
With a minimal monthly cost to the homeowner, these insurance or warranty protection programs provide up to thousands of dollars in coverage to repair or replace the line(s). Additionally, these types of public-private programs are offered at no cost to the Cities and no public funds are used to administer the programs.
Public-Private Partnerships involving water and sewer lines are an essential tool in repairing or fixing our country's aging infrastructure and saving taxpayer dollars. Additionally, these public-private partnerships can provide a continued or improved level of service at reduced costs, while protecting our environment and water drinking water supplies.
The stringent health and environmental standards of the Safe Drinking Water Act and Clean Water Act have caused problems for some local governments that do not have the budgets to make necessary capital improvements in water and wastewater infrastructure. As communities across the country act to meet these water challenges, forward-thinking public utilities and private operators with extensive expertise and experience are a powerful combination. Our water and sewer infrastructure has served this nation for generations and now it is time for the private and public sectors to collaborate more aggressively to ensure future generations can depend on safe, reliable water.
For more information, contact Mark Wilson of the Public-Private Partnership Alliance at 708-320-1699 or email.
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SOURCE Public Private Partnership Alliance