Tuesday, April 21, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Bob Dunning: Fairness prevails with water rates

BobDunning2W

By
From page A2 | December 19, 2012 |

NO MORE TIERS … while modest tiers for water use will remain during a two-year transition period beginning May 1 of next year, the City Council voted Tuesday night to permanently eliminate tiers after that for Davis water users … starting in the third year of the five-year rate plan the council approved, all residential water users will pay the same amount per gallon, whether they use two gallons a month or 200 gallons a month … no more pitting neighbor against neighbor … no more class warfare based on household size …

While it might have made more sense to eliminate tiers as well during the two-year transition period — council members seemed willing to go either way on this one — the Tier II break-off point was raised from 10 ccf per month to a much more family-friendly 18 ccf per month …

Had tiers been eliminated across the board for all five years, the water project itself might fare better at the ballot box in March, but what the council approved Tuesday night is a vast improvement on what was being considered just last week … it goes a long way toward putting all Davis water users on equal footing and gives them certainty about the size of their future bills and the steps they might take to control them … that option was not available in previous plans the council was considering …

The whole matter will now go through the Proposition 218 process, where ratepayers will be notified by mail in January of the proposed rates for all five years … those ratepayers then will have 45 days to file a formal written protest of the rates with the city … if a majority of Davis ratepayers file protests, the rates cannot be instituted … this process is not to be confused with the ballot measure on the water project itself, which will be decided on March 5 in a straight up-or-down mail-only vote … for sure, water rates will spike considerably for everyone over the next five years, but the pain will be shared equally … that’s about the best anyone can hope for, given that $113 million isn’t likely to appear out of thin air …

HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW? … because our water usage tends to go up in our long, hot summers when grass and trees and zucchini are extremely thirsty, some folks in town claim outdoor water use should be dramatically curtailed to conserve water … they also claim the only difference between a low-water user and a high-water user is how much water the latter “wastes” on outdoor use … household size, they claim, has nothing to do with it …

Well, if only outdoor use sends our meters spinning, why does the city spend so much money offering rebates for things like low-flow toilets, which, last time I checked, are all indoors? … yes, summer water bills are higher than winter water bills because you’re adding outdoor use to normal indoor use …

My good friend Don, who knows a thing or two about growing stuff, says he has been “a little frustrated hearing people suggest that outdoor watering is somehow less valid than indoor. Point: people actually eat stuff they grow with that wasteful water.” … indeed … in fact, I thought growing — and eating — your own sweet corn and beefsteak tomatoes and apricots and oranges and lemons was the exact definition of “sustainability,” a buzz word this town has absolutely fallen in love with …

Besides, one of the very best things kids can do with their spare time is to dig in the dirt, plant seeds, water them and marvel at the miracle of how one tiny black watermelon seed can produce so many great big juicy watermelons … I hope that the pure joy and amazement that this causes never disappears in our town …

PEDAL POWER … my friend Al at ucdavis.edu forwards a piece from the widely read journal “Governing” that notes “16.6 percent — portion of people who bike to work in Davis, Calif., which is more than any other city in the country.” … eat your heart out, Fort Collins …

— Reach Bob Dunning at [email protected]

Comments

comments

.

News

Aggie Pride on parade at UC Davis Picnic Day

By Wayne Tilcock | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
City wants a study of sewer rates

By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1

Hard-of-hearing student needs community’s help

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
KDVS fund drive includes on-air pledging, plus parties and food

By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
 
Art helped sell California’s agriculture

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

 
Sign up now for Celebrate Davis!

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4Comments are off for this post

Students, families can get after-hours Internet access

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Lawyers seek resolution to Davis molest case

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A4

Garamendi hosts conference for women

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

 
‘Invaluable public servant’ retires after 20 years

By Tanya Perez | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Your brain’s aging and a new report urges ways to stay sharp

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
Injury-proof yourself for effective exercise

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

Understanding risks can help women prevent leading health threats

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

 
Eyewitness speaks about Israel’s election

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

Free gardening advice offered

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

 
Grad Night tickets on sale online

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

 
Schenker speaks about ‘Magical Mexico’

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

Yolo County DA honors crime victims at annual tribute

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

 
Holman offers Publishing 101 seminar

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

Radio-controlled airplanes will race April 25-26

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

 
Woodland bike rides set every Saturday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

Get some advice at Connections Café

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

 
Join the 10,000-vegetable challenge!

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9Comments are off for this post

NAMI group offers family support

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

 
Birding tour will benefit Putah Creek Council

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10 | Gallery

Watershed Wonders activities return to Putah Creek

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

 
Yolo County Neighborhood Court seeks new volunteers

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

UCD looks at building a better brain as we age

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

 
‘Vault’ highlights ‘Kathak’

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

Two drought-preparedness water bills pass out of Senate committees

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11

 
Picnic Day favorites: dogs, bikes science

By Wayne Tilcock | From Page: A13 | Gallery

Strike up the band, and the bubbles!

By Wayne Tilcock | From Page: A14 | Gallery

 
.

Forum

Ready for the parting glass

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
 
John Cole cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: B6

Yolo Crisis Nursery still needs help

By Our View | From Page: B6

 
Drink up, kids, but make your choice a healthy one

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B6

Leash your dogs; it’s the law

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: B6

 
Speak out

By Debbie Davis | From Page: B7

Let’s not turn our backs on the Earth

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B7

 
This Earth Day, make a pledge to cool your home

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B7

.

Sports

Fast Aggie start negated by 14-0 USC lacrosse run

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Stagnant second-half offense sinks Devil girls

By Thomas Oide | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Over the hump? DHS baseball team wins late

By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Lambdin, Marshall lead Aggies at Mt. SAC

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

Republic FC gets another win at Bonney

By Evan Ream | From Page: B2

 
UCD roundup: Aggies sweep a water polo double dip

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Busy Clancy, Hall spark Devil tracksters at Mt. SAC

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3 | Gallery

 
Former DHS star Drexel returns to create havoc for Aggies

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B4 | Gallery

Pro baseball roundup: Oakland blanks Kansas City

By The Associated Press | From Page: B14

 
Sports briefs: Blue Devils split a pair of tennis matches

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B14 | Gallery

.

Features

.

Arts

.

Business

New phase opens at Brookfield Cottages

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12

 
Tucos closes; new Japanese, pizza, subs debut

By Wendy Weitzel | From Page: A12 | Gallery

WISH grant funds available to eligible homebuyers

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12

 
Marrone Bio Innovations strengthens its sales team

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12

.

Obituaries

Alice Catherine Micheltorena

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
Jody Zewe

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

Herman Timm

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
Ruth Rodenbeck Stumpf

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

Robert Leigh Cordrey

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

Comics: Sunday, April 19, 2015

By Creator | From Page: B8