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Letter: Water District Surcharge Necessary

I am writing to share both good news and bad news.  The good news is that our San Lorenzo Valley Water District (SLVWD) is currently guided by five smart and dedicated Board members.  In recent months, I have watched closely as this Board has wrestled with the challenge of an estimated $5 million in unanticipated expenses resulting from the CZU fire (note: this is after all FEMA, state, insurance, and grant revenues have been accounted for).  The bad news is that there is no way for SLVWD to magically cover this cost by saving money elsewhere – this would require SLVWD to eliminate essential staff and/or forgo essential infrastructure maintenance.  The only viable plan identified by the Board over months of careful deliberation is the one currently on the table: a monthly surcharge of $10 (for most accounts) for the next five years (with a guarantee that this money can only be spent for its intended purpose).  The surcharge is certainly unwelcome, but the suggestion that the Board is overlooking some realistic alternative is simply wishful thinking.  The bottom line is that rejecting the fire-recovery surcharge would do real damage to our water district, to our community as a whole, and to our collective investment in responsible local government.  Get the facts at: https://www.friendsofsanlorenzovalleywater.org/fire-recovery-surcharge

Mark Dolson

Ben Lomond

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