Mayor Joe Ganim on Wednesday was joined by Lauren McBennett Mappa, general manager of the Water Pollution Control Authority, to provide an update about rate stability, modernizing the sewage treatment system, addressing flooding and the new contract with Inframark, operator of the plants.
News release from Mayor’s Office:
Last week, the City of Bridgeport Water Pollution Control Authority (WPCA) Board voted to approve a new ten-and-a-half-year agreement with Inframark, LLC. to run the day-to-day operations of the WPCA’s wastewater treatment facilities. Inframark, which has been the WPCA’s third-party operator for the last 10 years, was awarded the contract after an extensive bidding process and negotiation with the board.
Under the new agreement which will take effect January 1, 2024, the WPCA will achieve a savings of over $60 million (approximately $6 million per year) relative to the existing operating agreement. This savings represents a 15 percent savings in the WPCA’s total annual expenses. The agreement will ensure that the WPCA’s wastewater treatment facilities run efficiently and in an environmentally sustainable manner for the foreseeable future.
Mayor Ganim praised the impact that the new operating agreement would have on rate-payers stating, “In a world where expenses continue to increase with inflation, Bridgeport rate-payers will benefit from a cost reduction under this new contract. I want to thank General Manager McBennett Mappa, the WPCA Board, and Inframark for working together to lessen the burden on rate-payers while also minimizing the impact of pollution to Long Island Sound and our city’s coastal resources. This agreement is truly a ‘win-win’ situation for the City, its residents, and the environment.”
WPCA Chairman Clement Young was similarly pleased with the outcome of these negotiations. “Our General Manager developed a process that was thorough, well-designed, and fair. Her dedication and hard work really paid off for the WPCA’s customers and the City of Bridgeport.”
General Manager Lauren McBennett Mappa stated, “After two years of hard work, we can be proud of what we accomplished in this new agreement.” According to Mappa, the savings come at a good time for the WPCA, as the WPCA has been mandated to significantly modify and expand its two wastewater treatment plants to comply with new environmental standards. “This new contract will truly benefit all of the WPCA’s stakeholders,” Mappa said.
Councilman Ernest Newtown, Liaison to the WPCA Board, said, “Everyone involved in this process deserves recognition for their efforts to reduce costs, help ratepayers, and protect the environment through this agreement. Furthermore, I am thankful to Inframark for agreeing to continue their commitment to supporting community projects and fostering community input during their time as third-party operator.”