Online poll: Leasing Water Authority lacks wide support

More respondents to last week’s
caycompass.com online poll think the proposed leasing of the Water Authority
from the government to a private sector entity is a bad or terrible idea
compared to those who think it’s a good or fantastic idea.

Of the 318 respondents, the largest
segment – 86 people or 27 per cent – thought leasing the Water Authority was a
terrible idea.

“This would mean a short-term gain
for long-term problems,” said one person. “If new revenue needs to be raised,
tax high-sugar items such as sodas or any item that is over 30-50 grams of
sugar in the same way that alcohol is taxed.”

“This is very risky to have the
private sector control the water sources for the Cayman Islands,” said someone
else. “It is very foolish.”

“Why privatise an entity that is
already profitable and will only drive up costs for consumers?” asked another
respondent. “Government should break up the current monopolies… like it did
for the telecommunications industry. I believe, however, that Boatswain’s Beach
and Department of Vehicle and Equipment Services Board are prime entities that
should be privatised or dismantled. In the case of the latter, it is far more
economical and efficient to use private garages than DVES.”

“Selling it would be better than
leasing it,” said someone else.

Another 62 people – 19.5 per cent –
thought leasing the Water Authority was just a bad idea.

“The Water Authority is actually
making money,” said one person. “Why give away something that is not broken?”

“We need to get rid of the
loss-making assets, not the profitable ones,” said someone else.

“The private sector will abuse the
situation and do whatever they choose to do,” said another respondent.

Sixty-six people – 20.8 per cent –
said they thought leasing the Water Authority was a good idea.

“The less business the government
is in, the better,” said one person.

“As long as government monitors the
prices and ensures the new private sector entity steps up to make the water
supply better than it currently is,” said someone else.

“Any company that would lease it
will want to run it like a business not a civil service job,” commented another
respondent.

Another 55 people – 17.3 per cent –
thought it was a fantastic idea.

“The more functions government can
out-source the better,” said one person.

A relatively large segment of
respondents – 49 people or 15.4 per cent – answered “I don’t know” to the
question.

“We need a lot more information,”
said one respondent.

“A recent report highlighted that
Consolidated Water’s cost of water was… higher than the Water Authority’s,”
said someone else. “Look forward to higher costs for all if they lease the
Water Authority.”

 

Next week’s poll question

What do you think about Cayman’s
two-party political system?

To participate in this poll, please
visit http://www.compasscayman.com/default.aspx#poll

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