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PWSA Files Suit Against Management Company That Installed Faulty Water Meters

The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority has filed suit against Veolia Water North America-Northeast LLC, which managed the authority for three-and-a-half trouble-filled years.

“They botched the procurement and implementation of a new automatic water meter reading system. They failed to properly bill PWSA customers. And they mishandled the change in chemical related to lead corrosion control at the water treatment plant,” said PWSA Board of Directors Chairman Alex W. Thomson.

Veolia Water was under contract to run the PWSA from July 12, 2012 to Dec. 31,2015. During that time $32 million dollars in bills went unpaid.

Thomson said they did a terrible job and were paid $11 million to do it.

“We’ll work with our attorneys to determine the maximum amount of damages we can recover from Veolia and actively pursue those,” Thomson said.

The suit also asks for “all other forms of equitable relief ” but Thompson could not further define what those might be.

The terms of the contract with Veolia requires that any disputes be filed with an arbitrator rather than in the courts. The suit was field with the American Arbitration Association.

In the meantime, Thomson said the authority is working to improve the management of the PWSA with the help of an interim director.

Veolia said it is formulating a written response to the filing.