By Tia Lynn Lecorchick (managing editor)
After more than a 10-year-long wait, the City of Madison has finally negotiated a deal with Paul Donnelly, developer of the Madison Lakes, a gated community, to acquire his private water system for Madison Lakes. City Manager David Nunn estimates that water customers of Madison Lakes Water System could see an estimated 50 percent reduction in their monthly water bills once the city takes over. In exchange for the water system, the city will forgive Donnelly’s $58,000 debt to the city in unpaid water connection fees. Donnelly will also transfer specialized water equipment to the city that has an estimated worth of $35,000. The final documents of the agreement are drawn up and currently being reviewed by Donnelly.
“I believe we have finally struck a deal. We aren’t paying anything for it, but we are forgiving some debt,” said Nunn. “It’s a good water system built to city standards. Usually, the typical model is the developer builds and the city accepts, so we just had a little 10-year delay,” joked Nunn.
Madison Lakes residents packed the City Council meeting for the city’s announcement about the acquisition. The crowd cheered when Nunn revealed the city’s acquisition of the Madison Lakes Water System would most likely result in an estimated 50 percent reduction in water bills for the more than 100 Madison Lakes residents.
“I wish that everybody was as happy as you are all at our meetings,” laughed Nunn. “We are just glad the city of Madison could come forth to help you all out. The stability the city will bring to the water system will definitely help the future of Madison Lakes.” City Attorney Joe Reitman assured that this deal has come about because of the “due diligence” of the city and gave “kudos” to David Nunn for “carefully reviewing all the documentation.”
The city is hoping to close on the deal in the next two weeks and officially make the city of Madison the sole provider of water in the city.