May 31, 2013


Britain’s Largest Privatization in Over a Decade Underway. Britain is continuing plans to privatize its state-owned mail service, the largest such effort since the privatization of its railways in the 1990s. “Once again consumers will lose out when prices rise and deliveries are reduced but banks make millions,” said Mario Dunn of the CWU. On Wednesday the government announced that banking giants Goldman Sachs and UBS would be leading the efforts.  Common Dreams

FL: How Tea Party Favorite Rick Scott Helped Cook Up a Sweetheart Deal for His Florida Friends. Tea Party favorite Governor Scott got into the mix and made the 1.2 million state-sponsored insurance policies the focus of a privatization campaign—a mission involving statements that were about as accurate as his old company’s Medicare filings. Vanity Fair

TX:  Is the 85 mph SH 130 toll road a failure? SH 130 was touted as a way to ease traffic on the horribly congested IH 35 between San Antonio and Austin…. But seven months later after its grand opening, the private company that built the road has been downgraded by Moody’s. The problem is traffic.  Not enough of it. …. SH 130 Concession Company released this statement: The company procures a rating from Moody’s on an annual basis in accordance with the requirements of our financing. We are meeting our contractual obligations to operate and maintain a world-class highway. And hopefully they will. If they do not, who will be left holding the bag? Beaumont Enterprise

WI: UW education dean warns school boards that ALEC seeks to wipe them out. “The ALEC goal to eliminate school districts and school boards is a bit shocking — but the idea is to make every school, public and private, independent through vouchers for all students. By providing all funding to parents rather than school districts, there is no need for local coordination, control or oversight,” she writes in the magazine of the Wisconsin Association of School Boards.

PA: Black Clergy of Philadelphia opposes Pa. liquor privatization plan. Group president, the Rev. Terrence Griffith, said Thursday the measure would make it easier to obtain alcohol. That, he said, would cause a spike in underage drinking and drunken driving. “We do not want to see liquor sold on every corner in the city of Philadelphia,” Griffith said in a phone interview. “We don’t want to see more deaths in our community. We don’t want to see more alcoholics in our community.” Newsworks

NY: Suffolk aims to privatize 2 health clinics. Opponents of the plan say a private operator will cut services that they are not mandated to provide. They also have criticized Bellone for using a waiver to avoid the open bidding process and deal exclusively with Hudson River. The firm is also in negotiations to take over another two of the county’s 10 health clinics. Newsday