Letter: Protest letters needed to stop rate increase for SLV Water District’s ‘Taj Mahal’ project
Oct 10, 2013 | 3917 views | 0 0 comments | 116 116 recommendations | email to a friend | print

The San Lorenzo Valley Water District continues to hide behind the true costs of this 65 percent rate increase.

With their PR spin of our badly neglected infrastructure as the main reason for the rate increase, they are glossing over the true costs and details of the Campus project, identified in their own Capital Improvement 2010 Report as top-priority project.

Not only is this campus being built on an ecologically sensitive wetlands area, includes a 24-hour gas station and underground holding tank, and that they paid $2.2 million for 1.7 acres, it is now coming to light that there are $3.3 million additional hidden costs which are not included in the already identified $9.3 million campus price tag.

From SLVWD’s own “Final 2013 Water and Wastewater Charges Study” released in March 2013, it shows that the district will be borrowing $6 million in fiscal year 2015 and financing it over 20 years.

The hidden costs of borrowing rather than using revenues directly will constitute a hidden cost of $3.3 million more in interest, for a total campus balloon cost of $12.8 million! You can read for yourself at slvwd.com.

I’ve heard this campus project being referred to as the Taj Mahal, a palatial, expensive building which seems overly exorbitant for both our valley and especially in these economically hard times.

The real Taj Mahal is called the most expensive gift in the world, the SLVWD campus Taj Mahal could be called the most expensive water district campus gift in California, if not the U.S.

Only the water district rate payers can stop this exorbitant rate increase to pay for a campus that is not only economically, but ecologically unsound.

Submit a protest form to the district that you are against this 65 percent rate increase before the October 24 deadline.

Alison Charter-Smith, Felton
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