It was disappointing to hear that the University of California reneged on its promise to pay for 30 percent of the cost of the proposed water project. UCD has its own wells, and is not charged by the city for the water it removes from the shared aquifer. Despite conflict of interest, UCD has a nonvoting member on the Clean Water JPA and UC lawyers were hired by the city to protect city interests.
Recently, Yolo Ratepayers for Affordable Public Utility Services and John Munn, past president of the Yolo County Taxpayers Association, filed a lawsuit against the city of Davis alleging that the city unlawfully fails to charge itself for water. The suit also alleges that Davis has adopted, and plans to adopt, illegal water rates to bill customers.
According to The Davis Enterprise, “Under Prop. 218, a ratepayer cannot be charged more than the cost of what it takes to supply water to their property. If the city pays nothing for the water it consumes, the remaining users connected to the utility essentially disproportionately overpay for their water service.”
Bottom line: UCD and the city of Davis remove a tremendous amount of water from the aquifer, both are pro-growth and neither intends to pay for the proposed water project.
Who will pay for the proposed water project?
Not the city. The city of Davis is planning on using intermediate aquifers with new piping paid from the general fund.
Not neighborhoods with wells. Several housing developments, old, new and future, are planning to have their own wells that will allow them to opt out of paying toward the water project.
The burden for paying for the project will be on a dwindling number of homeowners.
Why are the city, neighborhoods and developers opting out of paying for the water project? Because they know that it will be impossible to keep a project this complex on budget. Water bills won’t triple, they’ll go sky-high as the cost of the project escalates over the years.
Vote no on Measure I.