Vivienda minister Germán Vargas Lleras and Bucaramanga state water utility (AMB) general manager Ludwig Stünkel García at a public event. Photo: Julián Sabogal. MVCT
The Acueducto Metropolitano de Bucaramanga (AMB) is now the 5th certified public utility sanctioned by the Colombian government to approve water and sanitation projects.
In a press release the housing, cities and land ministry (MVCT) said new legislation approved in 2012 had made this delegation of powers to municipal water utilities. The ministry said this cuts red tape so that projects can be approved faster.
Previous certified public water utilities were Aguas de Cartagena, Empopasto, Aguas de Manizales and Empresas Públicas de Armenia.
Source: MVCT [in Spanish], 06 Dec 2012 ; BNamericas.com / WaterWorld.com, 06 Dec 2012
Water supply in Cuchumuela. Photo: José Rocha, Los Tiempos
Villa Gualberto Villarroel, better known as Cuchumuela, is the first municipality in Bolivia to achieve 100 percent water coverage. Official recognition for their achievement came from Bolivia’s water and environment ministry MMAyA. It is the story of a successful partnership between local government, communities and an international NGO, Water for People.
According to Mayor Oscar Terrazas, the foundation for achieving water for all 2,000 inhabitants of Cuchumuela was laid in 1996 when Bolivia passed the law on popular participation (Ley de Participación Popular). This gave local government and communities the power to set their own priorities for local services. Each of the 15 autonomous communities in Cuchumuela is responsible for the financial management and maintenance of their fully metered water system.
Dominican Republic national water utility Inapa has awarded a consultancy contract for a water and sanitation project for San Juan province to Spanish firm Tecvasa through its subsidiary Consorcio GSM. The project is part of Inapa’s goal to gradually transfer the management of rural systems to financially and operationally autonomous entities in local communities.
Source: BNamericas.com [subscription site], 17 Nov 2009
The environmental and natural resources committee of the Nicaraguan congress has started debating a bill aimed at [giving] communal potable water and sewerage committees (CAPS) [...] legal authority to manage financing from national and international entities for maintenance and improvement of potable water systems. Additionally, the entities would receive technical support from national water utility Enacal.
Comisión de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales
Source: BNamericas [subscription site], 30 Apr 2009 ; Asamblea Nacional [in Spanish], 29 Apr 2009
The Dominican Republic‘s potable water and sanitation authority Inapa and the Spanish international cooperation agency for development (AECID) have launched a joint project to decentralise [rural] potable water and sanitation systems in San Juan province, the presidential office said in a release. [...] [T]he project will [also] help Inapa create financially and operationally autonomous entities, which will enable communities to make their own decisions. [...]
Over the next three years, Inapa expects San Juan to become the model province for improvement of the operation, maintenance and sale of potable water and sanitation services across the country.
[In Mexico] congressman Silvano Aureoles is proposing decentralising the administration of the country’s water resources, currently the responsibility of national water authority Conagua. [...] According to the congressman, federal government initiatives pertaining to the water sector are “severely limited” because Conagua has too much control over decisions related to the administration of resources. [Without decentralisation] distributing water will become increasingly complicated [in th short term, Aureoles added].
Source: BNamericas [subscription site], 10 Mar 2009 ; BNamericas [subscription site], 10 Mar 2009
Guatemalan President Álvaro Colom has promised to implement a policy under which any infrastructure project carried out from 2009 onwards has to be approved by municipal councils. The policy is part of a program to encourage citizen participation in government projects and involves the creation of municipal development councils, which will be in charge of socially auditing projects.
“We have detected cases in which the executive has carried out projects that were not urgent or even necessary for their respective communities,” Colom [said, adding] that, while he is a supporter of community participation, care must be taken to ensure the development councils do not become NGOs.
Source: Business News Americas [subscription site], 03 Dec 2008