Tag Archives: Gavin Newsom water tax

CA Senate rejects Newsom’s “water tax” proposal, but it’s far from “dead”

19 May

I don’t know how many people are aware of Gavin Newsom’s proposal to add a 95 cent tax to our monthly water bill. He says the state would use the money to “help communities clean contaminated water systems.” 

Communities? In most towns here, Cal Water owns the water systems. In fact, they’ve just recently raised our rates citing various projects they need to do, most of them necessitated by new subdivisions. Developers have already or should have paid fees. Why is the general ratepayer expected to pick up the tab for the for-profit, publicly traded utility provider? Shouldn’t infrastructure be what you are already paying for? 

I was happy to hear that the California Senate rejected the idea.

https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article230438084.html

“A Senate budget subcommittee rejected Gov. Gavin Newsom’s water tax plan on Wednesday, instead recommending finding $150 million elsewhere to finance a safe and affordable drinking water fund….”

The Senate instead proposed that the money “be found” somewhere in the state’s projected $22 Billion surplus. That’s $22,000,000,000. 

But, it’s not just a one-time $150 million fix, they want to establish a permanent fund, meaning, they will have to find a permanent funding source. They have ways of getting around the voters.  “’It’s been a big stumbling block when it’s called a tax,’ said Steve Maviglio, a Democratic strategist who worked with water tax backers. ‘That’s the beauty of this. It’ll be in every budget.‘”

Again, why aren’t the water districts, particularly the for-profits, being made to maintain their infrastructure within the boundaries of their ever-increasing rates? They want to raise our rates AND put an additional tax on us. 

The proposal still has to be heard in the Assembly. Contact Assemblyman James Gallagher at james@gallagherforassembly.com or by phone at (530) 420-5066 and tell him to reject this scheme.  Legislatures feel this kind of heat, it really affects their behavior if it’s focused on the seat of their pants.  “A water fee proposal died in budget compromise talks last year as Democrats worried about asking constituents to pay more.”

You may as well contact Senator Jim Nielsen at his Chico office (2635 Forest Avenue), by phone 879 – 7424, or at his Facebook 

https://www.facebook.com/senatorjimnielsen

Tell his staff you’re not happy with the proposal the Senate came up with. Ask them why the district agencies aren’t paying for it. 

And, you might join Reform California’s campaign to pressure legislators to reject this bill. I signed up for their mailing list and received news of this tax proposal in February, and I believe their actions were successful in getting the Senate to reject the original tax proposal.

12 Democrat Legislators Named Targets of Campaign to Defeat the Water Tax

Reform California is working on a number issues to “make California more affordable”.  Check out their website at 

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