Thursday, February 23, 2012


This is the second of two postings this AM about the PMUA'

One problem that will be troubling if and when the PMUA is abolished or defaults on its obligations is the status of the PMUA's Bond issues.

I believe that the Ordinance and or Inter-local agreement creating the PMUA has the City as guarantor of any PMUA Bond issue. That in itself is of wonder; how could the Council of that time given the PMUA a blank check?

Obviously the City will have to assume the debt. However, if the PMUA ceases to exist will the bonds be due immediately or remain open until due date or being called? How will the new debt be factored into the city's budget if there is a cap on increase tax impact? Two more serious questions that need answers before an radical action is taken'

Also can a change for a stricter Council oversight of the PMUA , its Commissioners, and its finances be enacted?


  1. Stricter oversight is necessary and warranted. The meetings with the PMUA do absolutely nothing. The PMUA had increased their debt to upwards of $23 million. Each year that debt grows and Plainfielders will foot the bill.

  2. The Bond debt does not pose an insurmountable obstacle to dissolution. It must be understood that the citizens will pay it, on eway or another. They will either pay it through their continued payments to the PMUA, or in the alternative, they can pay it to the City who will as part of an orderly structured transition assume the debt. The advantage in paying it to the city through taxes is that the payees will be entitled to a tax deduction which typically would represent a 10 to 30% refund based on ones income.It is assumed, and admittedly this must be confirmed, that the bids for the collection of the waste would be substantially less than the PMUA current fees. It is further assumed that the sum of the annual Bond interest and redemption ( the latter increases with time) will be less than the current PMUA cost to the public. These assumptions can and should be explored with private haulers. The private collectors would be contracted to the City, and the cost billed through taxes to the public. Again, with a concomitant tax advantage. Based on an examination of prevalent costs to neighboring communities there is cause for optomism. Perhaps, even more importantly, we should anticipate that the costs of the unreformed PMUA, as confirmed by this recent tragic experience, will continue to escalate.

    The sewer department can be returned to the City. The sewer department can easily be relocated to Rock Avenue and the Cottage Place and Roosevelt Avenue locations sold. The ludicrous rent which is being paid for the Park Avenue office annex eliminated, as well as the "storage" lot rented on Cottage Place.

    Another possibility is to return the collection function to the City and reorganize the collection into an efficient operation thereby saving the jobs of those who are essential.

    What the employees of the PMUA should realize is that the "activists' have vainly sought reform, so that the organization could continue, albeit streamlined have been ignored.. The cavalier conduct of the Commissioners has been what has caused the crisisand the outcry for reform. Everyone's job is important. But so are the pocketbooks of the 50,000 residents most of whom are struggling to make ends meet. They too have some rights. Bill Kruse

  3. Thank you Bill; a most illuminating explanation of a workable scenario to resolve the PMUA morass. Perhaps our politicians from party head to councilors will consider it.

  4. At Old Doc. Don't count on the council to accept or even explore Bill Kruse's excellent recommendations. Many of our elected officials couldn't care a rat's you know what about whether the employees of the PMUA or the property owner's could have potential savings. Some of the council members are two intertwined with the attorney's and consultant's!