Wednesday, April 23, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

EID water/sewer rates

EDITOR:

Am I the only one complaining about EID’s water/sewer rates? I am a single senior citizen living on a minimal income and struggling to stay in my home. I live in Cameron Park and I am watching this very green area turn brown for lack of water. I planted a vegetable garden for the past 30 years and cannot afford to do so this year.

It is cheaper for me to buy my vegetables at the grocery store than pay more to water them. After talking to family and friends living in this area, a water/sewer bill for a family of four is approximately $400 every two months.

There are many wealthy people living in El Dorado County who do not have a problem paying their bill but there are also many low-income families living here. It has been widely known for years that EID has been mismanaged, pays their employees exorbitant wages and benefits, and has not properly maintained the infrastructure of our water system. Now they claim they need the increase in water/sewer rates to make repairs to the system that should have been maintained years ago.

I would like to see EID implement a program for low-income families, such as the one PG&E has, so we don’t get priced out of living in this great county. I have a friend in Southern California who pays a fraction of the amount I pay for water/sewer and they get their water from us. I know this is a futile attempt to achieve help, as has been demonstrated in many EID meetings the public has attended, but I just want to express the concern of many El Dorado County residents.

DIANA TUCKER
Cameron Park

Letters to the Editor

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Discussion | 71 comments

  • Nancy SwensonJune 24, 2013 - 6:28 am

    I agree, Diana. The water rates are way to high and climbing all the time.

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  • EvelynJune 24, 2013 - 6:37 am

    Water rates are exorbitant and will only get worse. EID's debt position is impossible; there is no way they can meet their repayment obligations. It would be useful if EID would tell us what they plan to do. Technical bankruptcy is not a fantasy. Just look at their balance sheet.

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  • Jack PodsedlyJune 24, 2013 - 7:58 am

    The story is the same at GDPUD. Things will only change when the ratepayers pay attention (at least to local issues) and vote for fiscal responsible people to be on the board. It takes a lot of work, but you CAN change things at election time at the local level.

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 8:08 am

    http://tinyurl.com/d3pag7r

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 8:22 am

    What is more valuable than gold? Than any thing really--to humans. Humans have been and still are fighting over it. Studies are now being "thought" about pertaining to the forests--there is not a lack of water--the trees are too thick and are sucking up the water--the infra structures are falling apart. We now have carbon trading happening...but once again..what is the most valuable resource humans have? Water. Read. Think...Americans need to read. Land, minerals...WATER...do not let any one take them away.

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 8:25 am

    http://www.bluegold-worldwaterwars.com/ something to think about...profit.

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 8:31 am

    Think UN...advisory boards--councils--sustainability...http://www.worldwatercouncil.org/index.php?id=1

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:56 am

    NO SAN STINO comes with a price. The water production/conveyance infrastructure for west EDC is insufficient and decaying. These future costs ARE INEVETABLE. If we preserve "rural" through no San Stino - no Marble Valley . . . . . no growth . . . then we will be paying as a result of no hook-up fees. We will also loose our "beneficial use" arguments for keeping our water. South State will take it. We will lose the "growth option". Be prepared to PAY for "no San Stino . . . ."

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:57 am

    ~~~lose~~~

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 9:22 am

    Good Morning Phil...how do you know this will happen? I do not believe the people are against growth...so much as-- controlling how it will grow. I believe "design" and measured growth is what they want...the other way seems to be a flood gate opening--and certainly the water infra structure would not handle it. Water use--interesting...doesnt the growth of our Agriculture--use this water ? More and more wineries are popping up...I bow to your knowledge on this subject. New crops would use the water and be under growth--wouldnt it?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 9:41 am

    Fran, at this moment, RIGHT NOW, as we chat the raw water pumping capabilities from Folsom Lake to the EDHWTP is unreliable and subject to IMMEDIATE FAILURE. This is a design flaw. The two arties that deliver water from the east are running over capacity. EDH is TODAY JUST ONE MAJOR LINE BREAK AWAY from water supply emergency. EID's board has voted on and passed an integrated plan to address these PRESENT and future concerns. These costs are HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS of $$$. These present and future costs will have to be born through higher rates AND GROWTH (THOUSANDS OF) HOOK-UP FEES. The west county NEEDS a third transmission line from the east. . . . regardless of growth.

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 9:42 am

    The two arteries . . .

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 9:51 am

    I went to a meeting before the board regarding the baseball field almost two years ago--someone was speaking to the fact that tariffs (rates)on water had not kept up with the needs of the infra structure--so that now people will pay for that...the speaker went on to say "if" rate had slowly moved with the times--that we wouldnt be in such dire needs--is this correct?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 10:20 am

    Fran, for the most part, yes. Back then too much infrastructure maintenance was funded from future hook-up fees. As for agriculture making up for future "beneficial use" requirements . . . NO. . . . not a chance . . . Greg Prada has in the past argued (perhaps still argues) to do away with the "agricultural subsidy". Mr. Prada does not understand that agriculture is still subsidizing our water. The ag subsidy is residual from agriculture's past activities . . . but a subsidy to us none the less. For agriculture to make future "beneficial use" we'd have to give the farmers free water . . . politically impossible.

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 11:01 am

    Thank you Phil...time to research more.

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 11:08 am

    One other thing...what if instead of housing--huge agriculture crops came in? Huge "cash" crops...would there even be water for them?

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJune 24, 2013 - 11:22 am

    Phil -- Is the cost for infrastructure needed to connect the San Stino, et al, proposed middle class ghettos covered by those hookup fees? How much is left over to pay for the upgrades you say are needed? There was a time when developers were being subsidized by existing rate payers... Adding additional demand on the existing infrastructure will require additional infrastructure investment. The result is -- at best -- no net advantage to existing rate payers, The argument that if we don't destroy our rural area now, we will lose the opportunity to ruin it later doesn't work for me, either. You have copped to these truths in the past, yet you continue to toss out these red herrings. Why is that?

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  • Dink LaneJune 24, 2013 - 12:32 pm

    EID went through an expensive legal battle with the State and Westlands (the industrialized farming business who have more than 3000 acres in a desert).... That was to maintain EDC's water rights instead of sending water down to the delta.... If you don't like the rates now, wait till the Westland's political machine gets done with the DELTA PLAN... You'll be paying for a $45 Billion to suck the delta dry...

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 1:16 pm

    Kirk...red herring...oh no--to throw me off my path? Phil--did you do that? lololol Its okay I still like everyone.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJune 24, 2013 - 1:36 pm

    Fran -- Phil has been putting this out for a long time, so I doubt this last was intended to distract you.

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  • Fran DuChampJune 24, 2013 - 1:48 pm

    Kirk--no worries...I really like Phil. I figure any distraction is okay--I love research. Water is a very interesting item--without it--humans do not survive. and it diverts me from the economic groups for a moment--which are scary to me...because I find that many on these committees have no clue what they are doing.

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 4:04 pm

    Kirk, the error in your statement rests in your assertion that additional demand triggers the need for additional infrastructure. Kirk, it is a FACT that existing demand requires additional infrastructure with attendant costs in the hundreds of millions. What I posted HERE is factually correct. The raw water pumping station from Folsom Lake to EDHWTP is flawed and subject to pump failure AT ANY TIME. The two transmission lines from the east, the Gold Hill Intertie and the Diamond Spring Main, have been running over design capacity for more than ten years. A THIRD TRANSMISSION MAIN IS NEEDED YESTERDAY. Existing customers can pay for it all . . . or new customers can share the cost. Where is the red herring, Kirk?

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJune 24, 2013 - 4:22 pm

    Phil -- Are you claiming that additional demand will not require additional -- in addition to those already identified -- improvements? And again: Is the cost for infrastructure needed to connect the proposed San Stino, et al, developments covered by those hookup fees?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 4:39 pm

    Kirk, essentially YES. From a distribution standpoint San Stino is the most "distribution friendly" of the big projects in the hopper. The distribution lines from the Diamond Springs Main and Reservoir 11 to San Stino will be paid for by the developer. The hook-up and water usage fees will defray the cost of THE THIRD TRANSMISSION LINE that is envisioned "paralleling" the Diamond Springs Main. The third line has to be built independent of San Stino.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJune 24, 2013 - 5:25 pm

    Phil -- how can San Stino be connected to the existing Diamond Springs Main and Reservoir 11 when they are currently running over design capacity? And that's just the most "distribution friendly" development. We are in this mess because developers did not cover the cost of infrastructure in the past. I doubt new development will be any different. Forcing folks to give up their rural lifestyle so you (and I) can pay a little (very little) less for the infrastructure we demanded sounds like a really crappy deal for them.

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 6:14 pm

    Kirk, Reservoir 11 provides the demand buffering that may arguably permit(point to you, Kirk) building without additional infrastructure. Whether that assertion is TRUE or FALSE. Is irrelevant. It works now . . . until "Murphy" visits . . . the "perfect storm" of line/pump/plant failure. EID is behind the curve. The third line will be - has to be built with or without these big developments.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJune 24, 2013 - 6:25 pm

    So build the line without the new development(s).

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 6:37 pm

    . . . an pay for it with the existing customer base . . . or yield "rural" and cost share with new flatlander future NIMBYS who find refuge from their urban hell by arriving in San Stino, the "new rural", and believe that they have the right to raise the drawbridge to preserve their "new rural" life style. . . . or . . . raise the draw bridge now and screw'em . . . and foot the bill ourselves. . . .

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 6:46 pm

    . . . just sayin' . . . no development comes with a cost . . . UNDERSTAND THAT . . . rate payers deserve to understand the rate cost of NO DEVELOPMENT.

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  • Kirk MacKenzieJune 24, 2013 - 8:01 pm

    Phil -- Okay, what is that cost? Assume the additional demand adds nothing (ha!) to the cost. Adding a few hundred(?) more ratepayers to the mix will dilute the cost to me by how much per month?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:36 pm

    Cute, Kirk. You know that I cannot speak with such specificity. Your bill will be higher without development. HERE is EID's 2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan. http://www.eid.org/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=3554 Look at thumbnail 179 & 249 $475,000,000 Do your own math, Kirk.

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:48 pm

    Here is EID's 2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan - http://www.eid.org/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=3554 Take a gander at thumb nail 179 & 249 $475,000,000 is an interesting number, Kirk. Right?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:48 pm

    testing

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:51 pm

    Cute, Kirk. You know that I cannot speak with such specificity. Your bill will be HIGHER without development. LINK - Here is EID's 2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan Take a gander at thumb nail 179 & 249 $475,000,000 is an interesting number, Kirk. Right?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:52 pm

    LINK - Here is EID's 2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:53 pm

    http://www.eid.org/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=3554

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:55 pm

    EID's 2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan can be found here - http://www.eid.org/index.aspx?page=62 Take a gander at thumb nail 179 & 249 $475,000,000 is an interesting number, Kirk. Right?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:58 pm

    Here is EID's 2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan. http://www.eid.org/index.aspx?page=62 Take a gander at thumb nail 179 & 249 $475,000,000 is an interesting number, Kirk. Right?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:59 pm

    http://www.eid.org/index.aspx?page=62

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 8:59 pm

    Kirk, MD web problems - later

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 24, 2013 - 9:04 pm

    Kirk, you know that I cannot speak with such specificity. Your bill will be HIGHER without development. LINK - Here is EID's 2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan Take a gander at thumb nail 179 & 249 $475,000,000 is an interesting number, Kirk. Right?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 25, 2013 - 6:17 am

    ~~~~~ I tried this last night, Kirk ~~~ Trying again ~~~ __________________________________ Cute, Kirk. You know that I cannot speak with such specificity. Your bill will be HIGHER without development. LINK - Here is EID's 2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan Take a gander at thumbnail 179 & 249 $475,000,000 is an interesting number, Kirk. Right?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 25, 2013 - 6:34 am

    http://www.nationalenquirer.com/celebrity/world-exclusive-inside-hillary-clintons-shocking-25-million-tell-all

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 25, 2013 - 6:39 am

    Read this, Kirk http://www.eid.org/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=3554 Take a gander at thumbnail 179 & 249 $475,000,000 is an interesting number, Kirk. Right?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 25, 2013 - 6:46 am

    The Mountain Democrat appears to have a filter that disallows EID hyperlinks, Kirk. Go to EID's "DOCUMENT LIBRARY" Go down to "Master Plans" Download "Master Plans •2013 Integrated Water Resources Master Plan" Take a gander at thumb nail 179 & 249 $475,000,000 is an interesting number, Kirk. Right?

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 25, 2013 - 7:18 am

    EID Document Library: http://www.eid.org/index.aspx?page=62

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  • Phil VeerkampJune 25, 2013 - 7:26 am

    . . . .try again . . . http://www.eid.org/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=3554

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 7:44 am

    HERE

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 7:45 am

    EID doc: HERE

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 7:46 am

    Strange. You're right, Phil. EID hyperlink (at least this particular one) disallowed.

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 7:49 am

    (Experiment) EID Doc. Library

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 7:50 am

    Mt. Dem. also filters out link to EID Doc. Lib. itself.

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 7:51 am

    Some sort of programming quirk, or done with intent? Dunno.

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 7:52 am

    EID (Does the Mt. Dem. hate EID?)

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 7:53 am

    Can't link to EID at all.

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 7:56 am

    EID 2011 CAFRHERE

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  • Fran DuChampJune 25, 2013 - 8:16 am

    http://www.eid.org/index.aspx?page=19

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  • Fran DuChampJune 25, 2013 - 8:17 am

    sorry-just picked a random page from EID...nosy I guess

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  • Fran DuChampJune 25, 2013 - 8:24 am

    I cant open any big docs there--site problem?

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 8:54 am

    Fran: I can download the docs. Just can't hotlink them. Let me try this: http://www.eid.org/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=3554

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 8:55 am

    Fran: I can download the docs. Just can't hotlink them. Interestingly, the Mt. Dem. won't even publish EID URLs

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  • EvelynJune 25, 2013 - 8:57 am

    Will "EID" itself eventually be banished from the public domain?

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  • Fran DuChampJune 25, 2013 - 9:38 am

    Evelyn--I have the new 2013 office suite...Im still trying to learn it--there are docs that I can pick up--but cant send yet...something to do with scripts on each doc. and items being sent to the "cloud"...lolol...which I still cant find...Maybe they are using the "cloud" as well...which is built into the new suite. Someday people are going to read published "secret" thoughts of " fran" published through the" cloud" on-line--it has been amusing...hopefully you and others can find away to convert the docs to where you can send them--or if I ever figure it out--ill share information.

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  • Fran DuChampJune 25, 2013 - 9:39 am

    My problem has been with many sites--not just government sites--sometimes I have to copy the whole doc--in order to share...I hate the "cloud"

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  • alishaJune 25, 2013 - 10:58 am

    This letter hits home for several in this county. Myself included. When my actual usage fee is only 30.00 yet i am paying over 200 because of all the base fees and charges that are added onto my bill, that is a bit absurd! I am, too, on a limited income and paying this bill kills me every time. I know some sort of relief such as a low income would def help. I love this area but because of the water bills being so outrageous I am being priced outta here.

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  • Kimball TuckerSeptember 22, 2013 - 10:34 pm

    I also have been growing a garden to help with the costs of things. After receiving. A few bills over $400.00 I turned off the water and pulled up the garden. It is a shame that greed has made those of us struggling loose the ability to be self sufficient. I for one will be careful at the voting booth. KT

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  • SparkySeptember 23, 2013 - 7:18 am

    It is not greed as the root cause, but rather the cost loaded on the water purveyors by the state's so called clean water act. This happened over a decade ago with a delayed timeline for implementation. Then add in Homeland security requirements and poof there goes the sewer bill. It is the sewer than is the driver of the rate explosion and the killer on budget. No greed, just the state and the feds passing the buck down to the locals and letting them take the heat....

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  • Fran DuchampSeptember 23, 2013 - 8:04 am

    We dont have sewers up here...do we still help pay for them down there? Not being mean--I like most at EID...they have always been nice enough to answer questions for me--when I email them. But it is a question. It has come up a lot lately--because people want to build up here. We have no sewers. We are septic. Does Camino have sewers? I think they are septic as well...sewers? Interesting. One time I received a fee at my school down south for a parking structure...I asked about it--since we didnt have one. I was told we would some day...lolol...Paying it forward. Shrugging shoulders.

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  • Phil VeerkampSeptember 23, 2013 - 8:18 am

    Fran, look at your bill. It's itemized.

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  • Phil VeerkampSeptember 23, 2013 - 11:55 am

    Fran, water bills are ONLY for water - LINK - •2013 Rate Tables

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  • Phil VeerkampSeptember 23, 2013 - 12:17 pm

    I said that wrong, Fran. The water COMPONENT of the water bill is exclusively for water. If you are on a septic system then you are not paying a sewer component.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
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