Clean, good quality water to drink is important to Davis. Just as important is good quality water to send downstream to the delta. The Woodland-Davis Clean Water Agency will provide clean drinking water for the next decades and make sure our wastewater discharge meets the requirements set by law.
Yes, the cost of water will rise considerably for Davis ratepayers. But that is as it should be. Water has been artificially cheap in the Sacramento Valley for more than 150 years. For years few communities in the valley had water meters, as if the water was just — as William Mulholland said in another time and place — there for the taking. But now it’s the 21st century, the climate is warming and the population of the north Sacramento Valley continues to grow. Competition for water for urban areas, agriculture and the environment will not abate.
Davis must make the commitment to the next generation of citizens and to their children by building the water project now. Without it, we run the risk of higher costs, possible fines if we can’t find alternative sources as the wastewater discharge requirements tighten, and continued reliance on groundwater that may become polluted, just as the mid-level aquifer already has become.
But what about the opposition to Measure I? They say we have time (but they never say how much). They say we can have alternate sources of water (without telling us what they are). They say the project is too expensive (but of course not building it is expensive, too). Unfortunately, their arguments don’t “hold water.” Experts on water law, groundwater hydrology, civil engineering and the political arena have all agreed that Davis needs this project now, not in some vague distant future.
The opposition loudly complains the rates aren’t fair, or that the “well-to-do” and developers are behind it. The experts on water law and rates have blessed the new rates as fairer than the old and the opposition has yet to show us the names of the bogey-man developers who are financing the measure. When asked to name their experts, one former City Council member has said they would lose their jobs if they spoke up.
Please join me in voting yes on Measure I for a clean, sustainable supply of water for the next generation of happy Davisites.