Lip service to conservation

By From page A6 | February 28, 2013

I urge you to vote no on Measure I. Admittedly, Measure I’s promised “better”-tasting and “cleaner” water sounds appealing, but there is much more to this project than those promises.

First, the project is a substantial commitment of city funds that will take decades to pay off. I don’t know about you, but when I take out a loan I have a repayment plan in place. The folks behind Measure I do not. The proposed rates are only projected out for the next five years. No one knows the rates after that. In fact, no one really knows what this project will cost — no final bid has been accepted.

Second, the water project is a “design, build, operate” proposal. This means that we are turning over our water supply to a private contractor. Shouldn’t we have more discussion about this radical change? Do we really want to privatize our water? I do not.

Finally, Measure I and the proposed rates pay lip service to “conservation.” That is all that it is. There can be no real water conservation under Measure I. If the project is approved, we still have to pay off the bonds. If we all use less water, if we all install rain barrels, the debt won’t change. We still have to pay it off, but we will have to pay more per cubic foot than we did before. We deserve a plan that promotes water conservation and protects our water resources realistically. Measure I does not.

Please mail in your ballot and vote no on Measure I.

Bob Hagedorn

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