letters to the editor

SLV Water District Board must find a better plan

The San Lorenzo Valley Water District rate increase proposal is flawed by stark inequities and excessive costs, showcasing the weakness of the Board in managing our District’s finances.

Their primary duty is to us, with effective oversight, guardrail policies, fair affordable rates and above all integrity to maintain public trust. This clumsy proposal and offensive “spin-to-win” misleading PR campaign falls short on all.

We are stuck with an inexperienced, ineffective Board majority for the time being, but we are not stuck with this flawed five-year rate increase if we act in solidarity. Please join me in submitting a Protest Ballot. Come to the Board meeting on Feb. 15. Take our District back.

Our Board must be better, do better, find a better plan. The Board had better, equitable rate options from the consultant providing the same amount of revenue, but chose a plan targeting low-water users, over 50% of us per District records, including thousands of low-to-moderate income families, seniors and those practicing water conservation.

These neighbors will see up to 58% increases in 2024, while higher users benefit by increases as low as 1%, in a reverse-Robin-Hood-effect. Of three elements guiding a sensible rate increase balance—revenue, affordability and water conservation—a 4-to-1 Board majority chose to devalue the last two and overvalue revenue—at a huge cost.

The Board makes pleas but no promises about the money we will give them. Our best promise is a better overall plan and electing better board members this fall.

But for now, submitting your Protest Ballot is meaningful democracy, and it’s a simple process. Contact the water district office or find the form online at their website. Not voting counts as a yes, so it is imperative to act now if we value doing better—for our district and our neighbors.

Debra Loewen
Lompico Canyon

Rate increase is long overdue

My family and I support the San Lorenzo Valley Water District in its proposed rate increase.

The need for the rate increase was studied at great length by a reputable consultant, and the resulting proposal is reasonable. The hardworking SLVWD Staff and Board agree an increase is needed. They now need our respect and support to move forward.

No one wants a rate increase added to the sum of all our high bills, but this rate increase is long overdue and needed because of insufficient revenues to recover from the damage of the CZU Fire and flooding, cover increasing operating costs, and work on the backlog of major infrastructure replacements and repairs.

Opponents complain, but have not provided better or feasible alternatives.

Larry Ford

Giving thanks for Estate Sale success

On behalf of the board of directors of the nonprofit organization, Damians Ladder, we would like to give a huge thank you to both the San Lorenzo Valley and Scotts Valley residents who worked tirelessly on our behalf, and to those who purchased merchandise at our Estate Sale this past weekend, making for such a wonderful success story.

To Sandy Woodruff who contributed items as well as the use of the retired Valley Springs Golf Clubhouse, and those who donated items toward this sale, thank you so very much.  

Damians Ladder will be able to help so many of our low-income and disabled seniors live safely and more comfortably in their own homes.

We will be able to assist with wheelchair and walker ramps, small electrical and plumbing repairs, gutter and yard cleanings, and if we are unable to provide a service needed that we cannot cover, we will find the help needed.

If you would like to be part of Damians Ladder, just email [email protected].

Colly Gruczelak
President, Damians Ladder

We welcome letters to the editor and commentaries on all topics of local interest. Email your submissions to [email protected]. Letters must include the writer’s name and hometown (for publication) and phone number (for verification). Submissions may be edited, and will be published as space permits. Letters are limited to about 300 words, commentaries to 500 words.

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