Lake Hopatcong Commission: Approached with $10M Proposal to Accelerate Projects

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During the December 7, 2020, meeting of the Lake Hopatcong Commission (LHC), the Commission was approached by GreenVest as a follow-up to their initial proposal in August. They are seeking $10M for a performance-based contract that would last for 20 years.

GreenVest is a New Jersey-based company that has been doing business for over 30 years. Their projects focus on Storm Water Management, and Phosphorus, Sediment, and Nitrate reductions. In this case, Sewers were not included in the cost but could be added.

Works with Princeton Hydro, Largest Project has been Chesapeake Bay Region, (See the Initial Meeting with the LHC)

$10M Project is an Innovative Solution according to GreenVest

What GreenVest is attempting to provide is a fast track to the 50 projects that have been outlined by Princeton Hydro in the Work In Process (WIP). They believe that they can implement the solutions within a 2 – 3 year timeframe and then maintain the projects over the 20-year term of the loan.

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Innovative Pay-for-Performance Model through Public-Private Partnership

  • Phosphorus reduction by 60%
  • Fixed Price, Full Delivery
  • Pay-for-Performance
  • GV carries performance-based risk and liability
  • Financing paid back over time (TBD but examples provided for a 20-year term)
  • Projects would be implemented using Best Management Principles (BMP)

Use of grant funding may support repayment program

  • Work can commence immediately following an agreement
  • Protect real estate/property values
  • Protect the tourism industry as an economic driver
  • Protect Lake health, natural resources, and ecosystem services
  • The GV team can tailor the program scale and repayment period to suit the Commission, Counties & Municipalities

Cost and Who’s Paying

The $10 Million contracts would run over 20 years and targets the different four towns around the lake to issue Tax-Exempt Bonds to fund the project. Additional State or Federal Grants would also help pay-down the loan if allowed by LHC.

“As the Mayor of one of the four towns around the lake, it is going to be difficult to sell this to our taxpayers at a 2% tax increase to fund this indicative.”

Actions Indicated from LHC:

  • Look at Tax-Free Performance Bonds from the towns to save interest
  • Look at the number and details for each project, and the performance metrics
  • Give is the information to help us sell this to the towns
  • Additionally, look for funding from the State as they own the lake

The following video is segmented to include GreenVest’s first presentation to the LHC, where they were asked to bring back the following:

  • Exact Projects to be undertaken (Not Answered just focuses on WIP)
  • Exact Performance Matric (answered only as 60% Phosphorus reduction)
  • Funding of Projects (Answered with 3rd partly lending firm) Interest Rate 5-8%

 

 
Editor’s Note: While it is too early to judge this proposal the Projects and Performance Metrics need to be clearly defined before the proposal is something the towns can consider. Otherwise, it’s like writing a blank check.

 


 

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