by Mindy Aguon
Guam - Concerned that Guam ratepayers could end up paying $200 a month for water within the next five years, the Guam Waterworks Authority and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency were not able to come to an agreement on submitting a single report to the district court by today's deadline.
Consolidated Commission on Utilities chairperson Simon Sanchez says negotiations did result in a lot of common ground with regard to the technical solutions necessary to bring GWA into full compliance with the stipulated order.
The two main issues that the parties can't reach an agreement on are the Southern Waste Water System and the rehabilitation of storage tanks. Sanchez says the USEPA wants the agency to make the necessary repairs in a shorter amount of time. GWA would like to have up to ten years to do so as funding for the projects would have to come through increases to ratepayers.
Both parties agreed to submit their own proposals to the District Court today for the magistrate judge to sort out and make a report and recommendation to the district court chief judge for her final decision.