WaterBriefs: Judge prohibits enforcement of proposed SRBC regulations

Jan. 3, 2007
Also in this report: RG Global acquires ion exchange wastewater treatment patents; Dallas Water Utilities picks Itron's Fixed Network for AMR; Black & Veatch expands global offices due to growth in water, telecommunications; Powder Coating Academy announces four city tour; ControlSoft hosts 'Tuning & Strategy' classes; Mountain Valley Spring launches glass bottle distribution; United Utilities unit director dies; WorldWater & Power, ENTECH announce extension for closing of acquisition...

In other news below:
-- RG Global Lifestyles acquires ion exchange wastewater treatment patents
-- Dallas Water Utilities picks Itron's Water Fixed Network 2.5 for AMR
-- Black & Veatch expanding global offices due to growth in water, telecommunications
-- Powder Coating Academy announces four city tour in 2007
-- ControlSoft Inc. announces 'Tuning & Strategy' classes
-- Mountain Valley Spring launches glass bottle distribution in Central Canada
-- United Utilities Contract Solutions managing director dies
-- WorldWater & Power, ENTECH announce extension for closing of acquisition

Federal judge approves stipulation temporarily prohibiting enforcement of proposed SRBC regulations -- HARRISBURG, PA, Jan. 3, 2007 -- A federal district court has approved, pending further order of court, a stipulation that prevents the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC) from enforcing new regulations. On Dec. 29, the stipulation and order were entered in a lawsuit filed by Saul Ewing Partner Michael A. Finio on behalf of Pennsy Supply, Inc. The suit seeks to permanently enjoin enforcement of the SRBC's proposed new regulatory scheme.

Among other things, the proposed regulations are attempting to impose a fee on entities for the "consumptive use" of water on their own private properties. In addition, water withdrawals and diversions will also be subject to far-reaching regulations, and the ability to rely on SRBC permits when businesses change hands will be put in jeopardy. The adverse economic impact of these regulations is estimated to be in the multiple millions of dollars, and will affect hundreds of businesses, communities and individuals in the Susquehanna River Basin, which geographically covers significant portions of Pennsylvania, New York and Maryland. Even users of public water sources are potentially impacted.

The lawsuit alleges that the regulations were not properly enacted, in terms of following procedures for notice, public hearings and input. It also alleges that the regulations contain constitutional defects and exceed the powers granted to the SRBC in the Susquehanna River Basin Compact, which is the law approved by Congress in the early 1970s after being signed jointly by the United States, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New York.

The lawsuit, originally filed on Dec. 22, in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, is only the second lawsuit brought against the SRBC in its 36-year history.

"We believe the proposed regulations violate the law in a number of different ways," Finio said. "The SRBC issued these regulations without sufficient public input and the regulations themselves present serious and excessive obstacles to the legal and reasonable use of water resources owned by Pennsy and other businesses in the Basin."

On Dec. 27, the parties met in the chambers of U.S. District Court Judge William Caldwell, where their discussions resulted in the stipulation that led to the Dec. 29 order. The new regulations had been scheduled to take effect Jan. 1, but their enforceability is now on hold, pending the outcome of a preliminary injunction hearing scheduled for Jan. 17.

"These regulations impact all water users in the Susquehanna River Basin," Finio said. "This is a significant piece of litigation because it attacks both the truncated process used to develop the regulations, and the fact that their content far exceeds the SRBC's powers. Water users throughout the Basin ought to be very, very concerned about the outcome of this lawsuit."

The SRBC is a governmental entity formed to regulate water users in the Susquehanna River Basin, which feeds into the Chesapeake Bay. The SRBC is charged with coordinating the efforts of three states and the federal government to manage the use of the water and related natural resources of the Susquehanna River.

Saul Ewing LLP (http://saul.com) is a full service law firm with 280 lawyers in eight offices in Pennsylvania, Maryland, New Jersey, Delaware and the District of Columbia. The Firm serves businesses throughout the United States and internationally, including recognizable names in corporate America, exciting start-ups and an array of closely held and privately held companies, as well as nonprofits, governmental and educational entities.


Among other recent headlines:

RG Global Lifestyles acquires critical ion exchange wastewater treatment patents -- Aquair Inc. parent company also appoints new CTO -- RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA, CA, Jan. 3, 2007 -- RG Global Lifestyles has appointed water treatment industry veteran and innovator Juzer Jangbarwala as its chief technology officer (CTO) and has reached an agreement with Mr. Jangbarwala to acquire an ion exchange water treatment patent he holds. Jangbarwala's appointment and an additional agreement with his company, Catalyx Fluid Solutions Inc., are contingent upon the execution of a multi-year contract between RG Global and one or more oil and gas production companies. With 25 years of experience in the water and wastewater treatment industry, Jangbarwala is the founder and director of Catalyx Fluid Solutions Inc. (a spin-off of Catalyx Inc.), where he also has developed industrial spin-off applications based on the patent being acquired by RGBL. Prior to that, he was founder, CTO and CEO of Hydromatix Inc., which was acquired by the BOC Group in 2002. RG Global will use his patented ion exchange technology to develop and launch a new low-cost alternative for the $2.0 billion residential water softener market that will meet the needs of residents in many California counties where self-regenerating water softeners are banned and in the growing number of states considering banning them. The new water softeners, expected to hit the market in early 2008, will generate a miniscule amount of waste that can be easily disposed in the trash. It solves the pervasive problem caused by traditional regenerating water softeners, which dump excessive amounts of sodium in the sewage and prevent municipalities and homes from reusing the water for irrigation of greenery...

Dallas Water Utilities selects Itron's Water Fixed Network 2.5 for advanced metering -- SPOKANE, WA, Jan. 3, 2007 -- Itron Inc. announced today that it has signed a contract with the Dallas Water Utilities to include meters, endpoints and installation of Itron's advanced Water Fixed Network (WFN) 2.5 system. Dallas Water Utilities is located in Dallas, Texas and provides water service to approximately one million residents.
The city of Dallas has an educational campaign, "Save Dallas Water", to encourage water conservation and help extend the life of existing infrastructure while decreasing the need for additional water resources, said Jody Puckett, Director of Dallas Water Utilities...

Black & Veatch expanding global offices due to growth across company business lines -- In Kansas City, expansion includes water and telecommunications offices -- KANSAS CITY, MO, Jan. 3, 2007 -- Growth across Black & Veatch's global business lines has resulted in the expansion of more than 30 offices worldwide. The company's total employment grew 20 percent in 2006 to 8,500 professionals. In the Kansas City area, employment increased approximately 10 percent to 3,600 professionals in 2006. Staff count has increased by 110 professionals, to more than 500, during the past year at the company's 8400 Ward Parkway location in Kansas City, home to the company's water business. Black & Veatch also has entered into a lease agreement for 19,000-square-feet of additional office space at an adjacent building, at 8330 Ward Parkway, to accommodate more than 75 new professionals in the company's rapidly expanding water business. Globally, in 2006, Black & Veatch added more than 100,000-square-feet of office space and expects a similar expansion in 2007 as a result of growth in its energy, water, telecommunications, management consulting and federal services operations. It recently added nine new locations and 900 new professionals in the UK as the result of an acquisition in its water business that doubled the size of the company's UK water operations. Excluding that acquisition, Black & Veatch's global water business had a staff count increase of 7.5 percent in 2006. Other office expansions also have occurred at Black & Veatch locations in Australia; Moscow; Ho Chi Minh City; Dubai; South Africa; Puerto Rico; Bangkok; Singapore; Mumbai and Pune, India; Houston, Dallas and Austin, Texas; Raleigh, N.C.; New York City and Tarrytown, N.Y.; San Francisco, Corona, Edmonton, Dublin and Irvine, Calif.; St. Louis, Mo.; Gaithersburg, Md.; Atlanta and Conyers, Ga.; Portland, Ore.; Detroit, Stratford and Warren, Mich., and Paramus, N.J...

Powder Coating Academy announces four city tour in 2007 -- RUTHERFORDTON, NC, Jan. 3, 2007 -- The online forum FinishingTalk.com, Metal Finishing Magazine and TIGER Drylac USA have teamed to launch the Powder Coating Academy 2007, a four-city tour promoting powder coating educational courses around the United States. Kicking off in Dallas, April 3-4, the tour moves on to Boston, June 12-13; Charleston, SC, Sept. 24-25; and Los Angeles, Nov. 7-8. Course highlights include pretreatment, powder application, equipment selection, oven and cure issues, spray booth issues, shop and equipment maintenance, and much more. The two-day course is sponsored by Metal Finishing Magazine and instructed by the powder coating experts at TIGER Drylac USA, and promises to help attendees take their skills to another level. FinishingTalk is hosting registration for these classes on the website at www.finishingtalk.com, which is now open and taking reservations for students, and sponsorships at each location...

ControlSoft Inc. announces 'Tuning & Strategy' classes -- Loop Tuning and Process Control Strategy Training Classes added in West and Southwest, for first quarter of 2007 -- HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, OH, Jan. 2, 2007 -- ControlSoft, an award-winning, innovative leader in advanced process controls, announces its training class schedule for the first quarter of 2007. Designed for engineers and technicians, the classes cover basic terminology and building blocks of process control as well as fundamentals and advanced process control techniques using ControlSoft's fully automated control solutions:
-- PID Loop Tuning Classes for 1st Quarter 2007
* Houston, TX -- January 24
* Los Angeles, CA -- February 28
* Phoenix, AZ -- March 28
-- Process Control Strategy Classes (two days) for 1st Quarter 2007
* Houston, TX -- January 24-25
* Los Angeles, CA -- February 28-March 1
* Phoenix, AZ -- March 28-29...

Mountain Valley Spring Company launches glass bottle distribution in Central Canada -- Toronto-based Cedar Springs Water oversees exclusive home-and-office delivery -- HOT SPRINGS NATIONAL PARK, AR, Jan. 2, 2006 -- Mountain Valley Spring Company today announced availability of one of the world's oldest premium bottled spring and sparkling waters to the greater Toronto area. Mountain Valley water is the only single-sourced bottled water available in glass for home-and-office delivery in the region. Toronto-based Cedar Springs Water will exclusively distribute Mountain Valley Spring's pure, simple, and award-winning spring and sparkling waters beginning this month -- the first time in more than a generation that Mountain Valley has launched its product offering outside of the continental United States. All Mountain Valley products available to consumers will be in glass bottles. Toronto-based Cedar Springs Water, a rapidly growing, family-owned local bottled water distributor, will spearhead the distribution and sales efforts, reaching thousands of homes and offices in the greater-Toronto area...

United Utilities Contract Solutions managing director dies -- LONDON, Jan. 2, 2007 -- United Utilities PLC is deeply saddened to announce the death of Mr Gordon Waters, Managing Director of United Utilities Contract Solutions. Mr Waters joined the group in 1996, and was appointed to the board of United Utilities PLC on 1 June 1997 as Managing Director of the group's infrastructure management business. He died on Christmas Eve following a short illness. Martin Bradbury, currently Managing Director of Utility Solutions, has been appointed Managing Director of United Utilities Contract Solutions on an interim basis...

WorldWater & Power Corp., ENTECH Inc. announce extension for closing of acquisition -- PENNINGTON, NJ, Dec. 29, 2006 -- WorldWater & Power Corp., developer and marketer of proprietary high-horsepower solar systems, and ENTECH, Inc., developer and manufacturer of advanced solar concentrating technology for terrestrial and space applications, announce that the companies signed an extension of the Letter of Intent to acquire ENTECH beyond the earlier announced date of Dec. 27. The companies anticipate the closing before the end of January. WorldWater & Power Corporation is a full-service, international solar electric engineering and water management company...


For previous "WaterBriefs" reports, click here.


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