Increases, Updates, Expansions, and Consequences

The Draft EIR for the Domestic Waste Water Treatment Plant just came out late Friday afternoon.

 

I hope the Council has their existential raincoats handy, because there is sure to be a storm of controversy over this one. (and the stormin over the proposed Water, and Wastewater rate increases hasn’t cleared yet)

 

While we’re on that subject….

 Former Mayor Samra stated on April 1st of this year:

“I don’t think anybody can deny that there needs to be rate adjustments,”… “However, I don’t feel that the way they are proposing this is the right way to go.” [1]

At the last City Council Meeting he:  “wondered whether some of the capital projects that are tied to the rate hike were needed at all. Was the expansion of the wastewater treatment plant needed, he asked, if the current plant’s capacity is still not met?”[2]

Good Question…

He oughta know…folks were asking him questions just like that one less than a year ago.

My, My…How soon we forget

I would like to take this opportunity to remind former Mayor Samra that he was “in charge” during the debate over the 2025 General Plan Update. He heard (among other things) more that one warning that the population projections in the plan would not play out as proposed and that expansion of the wastewater treatment plant was not really necessary.

The Council was begged repeatedly to scale back the scope of the plan into something that would approximate reasonable population projections for the years 2010-2050.

One of the major criticisms logged against the 2025 General Plan Update was that it was based upon population growth figures that were artificially inflated and/or unreliable

Some of the local farmers were worried about how the City’s growth would affect them personally. They had LOTS of questions!

And they weren’t too thrilled with the answers they were getting.

Even the Planning Commission wasn’t too crazy about The General Plan as written.

Since all other “Plans (like Waste Water Treatment Plant expansions) would be dependent upon reliable population growth estimates, one would THINK you’d want reasonable population growth numbers to base your “Plans” on.

But, despite the warnings about inflated population growth figures (and other concerns), The General Plan was adopted with a 5/0 vote by the City Council

So now we are dealing with the ramifications of that 5/0 decision.

There’s even a lawsuit or two.

I hope that if Mr. Samra, or any other former council person, wishes to continue harping about “the way things are being done” about Rate Increases, or suddenly feels that any Domestic Wastewater Treatment Plant Expansion should be postponed (in contrast to those who have been against such a project from the “get go”), he would be honest enough to preface his comments with a statement about how his voting record has contributed to the mess we’re in now.


[1]Merced Sun Star, Wednesday April 01, 2009 “Water, sewer rate hike meets opposition from some Livingston users Could vote down proposition.” By JONAH OWEN LAMB

 

[2] Merced Sun Star, Wednesday, May. 06, 2009 “Livingston council delays decision on water rates – again”  By JONAH OWEN LAMB

 

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