Four Questions for Public Water Now and Felton FLOW
Next week, activists in Monterey will host a forum with Felton FLOW to promote a government takeover of the privately-operated water system, which has served Monterey residents for over 50 years.
Since Monterey activists are touting Felton as the poster child for a government takeover, here are four questions about what has really happened in Felton that most likely will not get raised at this forum.
- Felton FLOW predicted an average annual water rate growth of 2.5%, yet rates are set to increase a total of 134% under government ownership between 2008 and 2022 – jumping from $85 per 10 CCF in 2008 to $198.93 for the same amount of water in 2022. This equates to an annual average increase of 9.6%. Did Felton FLOW purposefully mislead the public or do they lack the expertise to make accurate rate projections?
- FLOW predicted a utility purchase price of $2 million, more than six times lower than the actual price of $13.4 million. Did the group purposefully predict an impossibly low price to try to sway voters? Or was the inaccuracy due to the fact that nobody in the organization has experience appraising a water utility?
- Why do Felton FLOW and Public Water Now ignore the fact that their condemnation effort resulted in a significant tax increase that will force the average Felton resident to pay an additional bond tax of $535 per year for 30 years? Do these groups purposefully omit this fact from their materials to misrepresent the record?
- Nearly 6,000 rate increase protest letters have been written by Felton residents since the takeover. Yet these protests have been ignored by the government utility because the number does not meet the required 50%+1 margin of property owners needed to prevent a rate increase from being approved. Is this what Felton FLOW had in mind when it promised “greater control over decisions” through local ownership?
Monterey residents should get all of the facts on what has actually happened in Felton before taking Public Water Now’s word that a takeover is the right path forward. Learn more at TruthfromtheTap.com.
Also, you can hear directly from Felton and Monterey residents who have spoken out in the past about the harm done by a government takeover: