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Gold mine in water works?

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Evanston isn't the only community that sees potential for profit in the rising rates Chicago is charging suburban communities for water service.

The Northwest Indiana Times reports that Hammond, Ind., Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr. wants to sell Lake Michigan water to communities in the south suburbs now served by Chicago.

McDermott says Hammond could sell water at 20 percent less than what Chicago charges and still earn a profit. It makes Hammond's water utility a gold mine, the mayor says.

He's also considering selling off the water utility. Indianapolis did that last year, he says, generating at least $425 million for use on infrastructure projects.

Evanston City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz has been working for over two years on efforts to expand Evanston's water sales to additional communities beyond the five it serves now.

Park Ridge officials recently indicated some interest in Evanston's proposals.

Top: The mascot on the website of the Hammond Water Works Department.

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