Optimistic? NextGen Is Everywhere You Look
It’s just been a week since NextGen Utilities, a subsidiary of Bernhard Capital Partners, presented its proposal to manage Lafayette utility system. The LPUA, which would oversea such a turnover, is apparently no where near a vote. In an interview after the initial proposal, Chair Liz Webb Hebert says it was mostly a listening session.
So how would the powers that be explain billboards that are popping up in Acadiana and a brand new storefront at the Omni Center in downtown Lafayette? Business leaders have warned that Bernhard has deep pockets and would pay whatever it takes to get their proposal adopted to take-over management of LUS. So has the public awareness “campaign” started already? Voters are already asking how next GEN could promise 10% off LUS rates that would have to be determined by the LPUA anyway. Many questions remain.
Our sources say the short-term lease on the Omni Center location will just be open until after the November 6th election. However, there has been speculation that it will remain open until the December vote which includes the “deconsolidation” measure.
An article posted on DevelopingLafayette.com details the information that’s being handed out at the downtown location. On Wednesday night, we saw workers handing out free jambalaya to people walking by.
We’ve reached out to Bernhard and City-Parish leaders for more information and will provide it to you as it becomes available. Our question is, is this a little bit optimistic?