City of Missoula Would Charge Higher Rates Than Mountain Water, Analyst Testifies
The Missoula Mountain Water Condemnation Trial had its tenth day of hearings today, Thursday, April 2, and the often mentioned Carlyle Partner Robert Dove took the stand. Much of Dove’s testimony centered on the timeline of events between Carlyle’s purchase of the water company to the date of Missoula’s Condemnation attempt. Mountain Water attorneys calculated the value of the water company at 126 million dollars and pointed out that Missoula’s offers never came close.
Attorney: "What was the number that you had suggested to Mr. Wood during the course of the discussions in 2013 that would have allowed you to have gotten to an opportunity where you could negotiate with the city on a final price.
Dove: "120 [million dollars]"
Attorney: "And did the city ever increase the offer that it made in February of 2013?"
Attorney: "And in fact it lowered its offer? Is that your testimony?"
Further testimony came from utility management consultant John Guastella, who was brought in to analyze who would be able to charge lower rates to Mountain Water customers, the City or a private company. The market price for Mountain Water Company was a key factor in that estimate.
"In examining that issue I find that the rates that the city would charge, if it acquired it at its market value, would exceed that of what the Mountain Water Company charges," Guastella said.
Guastella went on to claim that the city would charge “significantly higher rates,” and that the city’s analyses that it could charge lower rates was “incompetent.” During Cross-examination, city attorneys pointed out that Guastella had testified on behalf of private water companies many times in the past.