At Least Four Suitors Vying for Harrisburg's Troubled Incinerator

Date: March 22, 2012

Source: News Room

There are at least four contenders competing to take over the troubled Harrisburg, PA incinerator which has its host city swamped in $310 million of debt. Among them are the Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority, Cambridge Project Development Inc. (Miami, FL) together with Energy Investors Funds (Needham, MA), Interstate Waste Services (Jersey City, NJ), and Wheelabrator Technologies Inc. (Hampton, NH) which is a subsidiary of Waste Management. Lancaster offered $124 million last year and also promised lower disposal fees. Waiting in the wings is the facility's current operator Covanta Energy Corp. (Morristown, NJ) which has a right of first refusal but has not yet made a bid. Covanta has a 10-year operating agreement that began in 2007. David Unkovic, the state-appointed receiver overseeing Harrisburg's finances, announced the list this week. The city of Harrisburg is responsible for the $310 million of debt held by the Harrisburg Authority that owns the 40-year-old plant and has skipped $65 million of payments. Dauphin County and bond insurer Ambac Assurance Corp. have made payments on the debt when the city failed to do so. The county and insurer are suing the city to recoup their payments, restructuring costs, and principal and interest owed to the county and insurer have expanded the burden.

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