Sunday, April 20, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Davis voters approve surface water project

Will Arnold, campaign manager for the Yes on Measure I committee, celebrates with friends and supporters on 
Tuesday evening at Our House restaurant in downtown Davis. A total of 14,832 votes were cast (39.4 percent), 
compared with 17,219 votes in the mail-only Measure C school parcel tax election last March (39.9 percent).
Fred Gladdis/Enterprise photo

By
From page A1 | March 06, 2013 | Leave Comment

By almost 8 full points, Measure I and the Woodland-Davis Clean Water Agency surface water project were approved by Davis voters Tuesday, allowing the City Council to proceed with its plan to deliver a new source of drinking water to town by 2016.

When the final tally for the all-mail election flashed up on the Yolo County Elections Office website just before midnight, Measure I had received 8,014 “yes” votes, or 54.1 percent of the 14,832 total votes cast, while 6,802 residents, or 45.9 percent, had voted no.

Almost 40 percent of those registered to vote in Davis participated in the election.

The $113 million project will import treated Sacramento River water to Davis and Woodland, replacing each city’s ground well drinking water supply entirely except during peak consumption periods in the summer. If the project remains on schedule, construction would begin later this year.

“When you couple the percentage (of yes votes) with the cost, you realize that people realize that we have to move forward,” Mayor Joe Krovoza said after the majority of the votes had been counted late Tuesday night. “I think this shows the community is willing to make the investment to finally have a clean water system and I’m gratified by that.”

Krovoza and the rest of his City Council colleagues joined the Yes on Measure I committee Election Night party — following their meeting — at Our House restaurant downtown, which had launched into a full celebration by the time they arrived.

At about 8:15, the Yolo County Elections Office posted results from about 13,000 votes on the Measure I election page, excluding only those votes cast Tuesday. When the first numbers popped up, showing about a 1,200-vote advantage with only about 10 percent of the votes left to count, Yes on Measure I committee members knew they had sewn up the victory.

“I’m really proud of our community,” Yes on Measure I campaign manager Will Arnold said. “This was a very complex decision that the community made and it was a long time coming. I’m impressed with the city of Davis that they made the decision to move forward with this type of an investment.”

Also attending the Yes on Measure I celebration Tuesday were state Sen. Lois Wolk, D-Davis; Yolo County Supervisor Don Saylor; former Davis City Councilman Stephen Souza; Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kemble Pope; Water Advisory Committee chairwoman Elaine Roberts Musser; and Woodland City Manager Paul Navazio, among others.

“A community only makes a major decision like this maybe once every two or three generations and I’m very proud of the community for choosing this path,” Sen. Wolk said.

The Yes on Measure I committee received more than $71,000 to finance its campaign promoting the surface water project, including $20,000 from Davis resident and Natural Resources Commissioner Alan Pryor and $20,000 from Sacramento-based labor unions.

Arnold and the Yes on Measure I committee campaigned to the very end with a text message blast Tuesday to about 2,600 residents, urging them to vote and to vote “yes” on Measure I.

‘A lot of hard work’

The No on Measure I committee, meanwhile, held their Election Night party — with about 30 Measure I opponents in attendance — at Water Advisory Committee member Walter Sadler’s house in Central Davis.

While the results of the election left that group visibly disappointed, there was still a palpable sense of pride among the group over the effort that went into putting up a fight. Several of the No on Measure I supporters did not consider the final vote to be a mandate in favor of the water project.

“It was a lot of hard work,” No on Measure I committee leader Michael Harrington said after learning that his cause had been defeated. “A lot of Davis residents worked hard to bring it to people’s attention that this project was far from perfect.

“We would have liked to have won tonight, but at the least (those of us who worked on the referendum) still cut the project costs by over $30 million.”

No on Measure I raised $23,990 for its campaign against the surface water project.

The conclusion of the Measure I election also did not diffuse lingering concerns over the project’s costs and the effect they could have on the community.

“This is going to be bad for the town,” said No on Measure I supporter John Munn, former president of the Yolo County Taxpayers Association. “Will the city be able to pay for future parcel taxes, like the parks tax and school parcel taxes?”

Munn also took issue with the all-mail election process, specifically about the fact that residents received ballots in some cases more than a week before the ballot pamphlets that include measure arguments and rebuttals arrived. He wondered how that may have affected the vote.

Rate increases loom

In any case, while the water project has earned a majority endorsement from the voting public through Measure I, the city and the City Council still have several obstacles they must hurdle before the project can come to fruition.

In order to pay for the project, the council must adopt water rate increases, which likely will triple or almost quadruple the average water bill over the next five years. On March 19, the City Council will conduct a public hearing to adopt those rate increases — and the corresponding rate models that determine how the costs are spread out among all the ratepayers in the city — unless enough ratepayers protest.

More than half of the city’s approximately 16,000 ratepayers would have to protest the rate increases to block the council from adopting them.

Harrington, who has filed — though not yet served — a lawsuit against the city alleging that the proposed rates are not legal under Proposition 218, made it clear Tuesday that the council still has work to do on the rates.

“The city still has to provide for fair, lawful, affordable rates to the ratepayers and that remains to be seen,” Harrington said.

Krovoza did not shy away from addressing those concerns Tuesday. The mayor also laid out the council’s other important task, now that the project has been approved.

“Going forward, the council now will double down on reducing costs and making sure the implementation of the rates is as fair as possible to everybody,” Krovoza said. “Now that the vote is cast, this council is going to keep working to lower costs all the way through.”

— Reach Tom Sakash at tsakash@davisenterprise.net or 530-747-8057. Follow him on Twitter at @TomSakash

Tom Sakash

Tom Sakash covers the city beat for The Davis Enterprise. Reach him at tsakash@davisenterprise.net, (530) 747-8057 or @TomSakash.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Davis Enterprise does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

News

UCD admits record number; 4,284 from abroad

By Cory Golden | From Page: A1

 
Hub of activity: DHS newspaper keeps evolving

By Zoe Juanitas | From Page: A1 | Gallery

A springtime ritual

By Wayne Tilcock | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Tom Adams seeks Davis school board seat

By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A1

Holy fire ceremony draws thousands in Jerusalem

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Tour renovated YCCC facility Thursday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Tour Davis Waldorf School on Wednesday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

The fifth annual Tour de Cluck is soon to be hatched

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Ortiz lawn signs available

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Sign up soon for spring cooking classes

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Robb Davis team to rally on Saturday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Steadfast in their support

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A4 | Gallery

 
Yolo Hospice offers free grief workshops

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Sign up for Camp Kesem caterpillar crawl

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Quilters gear up for annual show

By Sebastian Onate | From Page: A4

League hosts a series of candidate forums

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
KDVS launches fund drive on Monday

By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A5

Calling all Scrabble fans

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5 | Gallery

 
Hub webpage is seeing traffic increasing

By Zoe Juanitas | From Page: A8

Lescroart welcomes all to book-launch party

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A16 | Gallery

 
DEVO set to serve up 14th annual Winkler Dinner

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A16 | Gallery

Learn Chinese crafts at I-House

By Sebastian Onate | From Page: A16

 
Preschool open house set at Davis Waldorf

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A16

Birch Lane celebrates its 50th anniversary

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A16

 
Hotel/conference center info meeting set

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A16

.

Forum

Take ownership of your health

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B5

 
Keep your baby safe

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

Reliving the agony and ecstasy of spring

By Marion Franck | From Page: A7

 
Road diet? No, city diet!

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12, 2 Comments

 
We’re reveling in our equality

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12

Vote no; it’s fiscally responsible

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12

 
Rick McKee cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A12

 
Core values on campus

By Our View | From Page: A12

 
Bill is an affront to UC Davis ag biotech and local farmers

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A13

Don’t want to sit in Fix 50 traffic? Consider alternatives

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A13, 1 Comment

 
.

Sports

 
UCD softball shut out by Santa Barbara

By Thomas Oide | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Aggie men shoot 9-under, lead own tourney

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Stars shine in Woody Wilson Classic

By Evan Ream | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Devils burn up the track

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
UCD roundup: Aggie baseball swept away by Highlanders

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

A’s score 3 in ninth, rally past Astros 4-3

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

 
.

Features

.

Arts

.

Business

Yolo Federal Credit Union gets WISH funds

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

 
PG&E pays taxes, fees to county, cities

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9, 1 Comment

Will Davis get an Old Soul?

By Wendy Weitzel | From Page: A9

 
Pediatricians, nurse practitioner hired at Woodland Healthcare

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9 | Gallery

Asian stocks mostly higher after mixed U.S. earnings

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Davis Roots will showcase its graduating startups

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A14

University Honda wins another President’s Award

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A14 | Gallery

 
Dutch Bros. raises $19,000 for girl with leukemia

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A14 | Gallery

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Comics: Sunday, April 20, 2014

By Creator | From Page: B8