THE FUTURE of a local water business has been raised in the House of Commons by Wrexham MP Ian Lucas.
A proposed takeover of Dee Valley Water by the larger Severn Trent Water has caused concern in the local community over the impact that the proposals could have on local jobs, services and procurement. Mr Lucas has already met with Severn Trent Water and made clear his opposition to their bid, and will meet with unions and others tomorrow alongside Clwyd South MP Susan Elan Jones and Shadow Secretary of State for Wales Jo Stevens.
During Business Questions today, Mr Lucas raised the takeover proposals in the Chamber. He told the House: “Dee Valley Water is a valued, independent business in NEW supplying water to Wrexham and Chester. Its independence and many jobs are threatened by a takeover by Severn Trent. If local decision making is important, what say can local people in my area have about who sells them the water that they drink?”
In reply, the Leader of the House said the sale was a commercial decision - but recommended Mr Lucas put in for a further debate.
Separately, Mr Lucas and Ms Jones have also written to Secretary of State for Wales, Alun Cairns MP, calling on him to make clear his views on the matter.
In their letter, they state: “The workforce and trade union at DVW support strongly an acquisition by Ancala and are concerned that the acquisition by Severn Trent will cost jobs locally.
“We in North-East Wales would be grateful for your support to retain a successful, independent Welsh business and invite you to make public your support for the Ancala bid.”
Speaking today, Mr Lucas said: “I will continue to push the Government on their response to this takeover, and will ask Ministers to answer local people’s questions in a Parliamentary debate as soon as possible.
“Since these proposals first came to public attention, there has been real concern among people about what they will mean for our local water company.
“A takeover by a large company like Severn Trent, headquartered outside Wales, will have a major impact on our area and on Welsh jobs and services.
“The Secretary of State spoke earlier this month about the importance of water in Wales and should speak out about these proposals now.”