Are Cal Water’s rates affordable for Butte County?

23 Sep

 

 

Kern County Board of Supervisors has stood up for their constituents and mounted a formal protest against Cal Water’s latest rate hike. One of the reasons listed in their argument ‘against’ is “affordability”. They claim that Cal Water rates are already not affordable for many residents of Kern County, including Bakersfield, where the census bureau lists the median income at around $56,000/year and a poverty rate of about 20 percent. 

“The EPA’s recommended affordability threshold for water and wastewater costs combined is 2.5% of income, and the California Department of Public Health sets affordability at 1.5% of income,” Supervisor Couch said. “Cal Water’s current rates in the Kern River Valley already far surpass the affordable level and would climb even higher under the current rate proposal. “

Something else Chico has in common with Bakersfield is the little “!” next to the listings “persons in poverty” and “persons without health insurance”.  Chico has a poverty rating – that’s people living below the poverty level (for a family of 4 it’s about $25,000/year) – of 23%. The state level is only about 16%, and for Butte County it’s 20.4%. 

The median income in Chico, even with all these public salaries, is only $43,752. Those dirt daubers in Bakersfield are making a median  income of $56,204.  I would guess that might be because Bakersfield is also the seat of Kern County, so there are a lot of public salaries there too. 

This rate increase is unreasonable, an obvious grab for money to pay down their pension liability. 

From Census Bureau Quick Facts   http://www.census.gov/quickfacts/table/INC110213/00,0613014

 

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3 Responses to “Are Cal Water’s rates affordable for Butte County?”

  1. bob September 23, 2015 at 7:42 pm #

    “…Chico has a poverty rating – that’s people living below the poverty level (for a family of 4 it’s about $25,000/year) – of 23%. The state level is only about 16%, and for Butte County it’s 20.4%.”

    Those are numbers to be quoted next year when the trough feeders come around with their tax increase demands. You have nearly a quarter of the city’s people living below the poverty level while these trough feeders have six figure yearly pensions. When you factor in the value of their pensions alone they are multi-millionaires. And they call them selves public servants!

    • Juanita Sumner September 24, 2015 at 5:04 am #

      Yes, the new One Percent. It used to be doctors and professional athletes, now it’s public employees.

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