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Byline: Greg Stone
Dec. 24--Chris Jarrett got a letter Monday morning from Jay Goldman. He immediately lost his Christmas cheer.
"I don't know why he couldn't have waited until after the holiday season and at least extended the courtesy of talking to me before going public like this," said Jarrett, president of West Virginia-American Water Co. "I'm shocked, absolutely shocked."
What alarmed Jarrett was the Charleston mayor's announcement that the city of Charleston would explore purchasing the water company's plant. It is entitled to do so, according to a franchise agreement the city and company signed in 1963.
That agreement expired in 1988 but the two entities have continued to operate under its terms.
"At the expiration of this franchise, should the Council of said city elect to purchase the plant of West Virginia Water Company, the said company shall sell the same to the city at the actual value thereof ...," states the agreement, hammered out in small, typewritten letters.
In his Monday letter to Jarrett, Goldman asked that Jarrett provide City Council with financial information on the …