Will the Spring Valley Water Co. Agree?
At last there seems to be a chance of the Spring Valley Water Company, of San Francisco, coming to an agreement with the city in respect to the purchase of the former’s waterworks system by the latter. On the recommendation of the advisory water committee. Mayor Rolph has made the company a formal offer to purchase its plant and system for $38,500,000, with the sum of $1,300,000 added, the latter representing all moneys now impounded and awaiting the outcome of litigation. The mayor’s letter is countersigned by all the members of the advisory water committee, and all the members of the hoard of supervisors except Andrew J. Gallagher. The signatures thus appended to the mayor’s letter and endorsed by John R. Freeman, the city’s consulting engineer, who considers the offer to the company as a fair one, and Percy V. Long, city attorney, it is claimed, binds the officials to urge favorable action upon the proposition if the sum offered is acceptable to the company. If it is, the people will be asked to vote on paying the amount proposed. Their endorsement will be followed in accordance with the requirements of the charter, and the board of supervisors will invite proposals from outside sources for the sale to the city of a water supply system on which the Spring Valley Water Company will, in due form, make an offer to sell its property to the city for the amount previously agreed upon, after which the settlement will be a task of no difficulty. The mayor’s letter, with the offer of purchase money, amounting to $40,000,000, is, of course, tentative, but it is thought the company will agree to it. Several months ago information reached the advisory water committee that the Spring Valley Water Company would sell its plant and system to the city for $45,000,000, with the probability that $43,500,000 might be accepted. Whether that was an irreducible minimum remains to be seen.