At the CSD meeting, yesterday the board voted to start the Prop 218 process on raising the monthly service fee. According to the auditor if the board does nothing CSD will be out of money sometime in April. According to our CFO says we could go another year if we use the monies in our LAIF leaving no monies for any major repair needed.
This means that on your Jan 1st bill your monthly service charge will increase by $20.00 (74%) and then go up $2.00 more each year from Jul 1, 2011 to Jul 1, 2015.
At the meeting Wes Barton (ex CSD pres) stated that he was going to an association meeting of Private Water Service Providers and said we would be much better off privatizing CSD. This is something that he has been working on since he was on the board and maybe even before.
Those of you that think we would be better off privatized need to read Private vs Public Water Here is a few facts to ponder.
A 2006 California Water Rate Survey show that households in districts with privately owned systems are paying, on average 20.28 % more per month for clean drinking water than households served by either municipal systems or special water districts created by citizens and overseen by government officials.
In the United States, regulations limit the profits of private water companies to a margin of approximately 10 percent. However, companies get around this by leveraging their assets. In other words, instead of using money they had borrowed for needed improvements to water operations and infrastructure, the companies invest in side businesses or other activities that diversify their operations to increase profits. In general, private companies have incentives to spend more on investments not directly related to the original purpose of improving water infrastructure so that more money goes into the pockets of corporate shareholders and executives.
In California, three of the six corporate water companies reported a combined income of $78.88 million in 2006.
I think what is most upsetting to me is that we ratepayers are always left holding the bag and I saw no real effort from the district in reducing their operating costs. We really do not have a choice on the rate increase; as the board will vote on it end of November. We do have a choice in the directors we elect to get us out of this mess.
Mary Brown and I have real life experience in business and finance and I served on the Assn board successfully for my 3 yr term and improved the finances without raising the dues.