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Say 'no' to fee changes

Posted: July 10, 2009 8:19 p.m.
Updated: July 11, 2009 4:55 a.m.
I may be a little naive, but I have always thought most people are honest and anxious to do the best they can.

I also believe honesty goes beyond telling the truth. It includes telling the whole truth and not leaving out important details.

Now, don't take that to imply that I accept information on blind faith. It is equally important to be vigilant and verify what you read and hear the best way that you can.

I recently received a nice color flier from the city of Santa Clarita telling me about the proposal to decrease the stormwater pollution fees by 10 percent and changing the methodology for calculating fees generated by different types of land uses. That reduction equates to $3.50 per year for 86 percent of us.

Unfortunately, the flier does not mention how it will affect the remaining 14 percent. If I can believe the testimony presented at the City Council meeting when this item was enacted, the change in calculation methodology will cause substantial increases for those properties.

Next, I received my shiny color Waste Management community bulletin with my trash collection bill. In it is an "important notice" that our street sweeping schedule is being changed from every two weeks to once a month.

Calling the information number, I was told that street-sweeping is funded by the Stormwater Assessment District.

Now, let me get this straight. The city is proposing to reduce our street sweeping service by 50 percent while lowering our rate by 10 percent? That sounds like a fee increase to me. In addition, they want the authority to raise our rates every year per the Consumer Price Index (CPI)?

After watching our Mayor Frank Ferry and Councilwoman Laurene Weste approve an 11 percent Price Index increase for the Sanitation District, when this year's Price Index is zero, I am not sure I want to give up that authority, either.

The stormwater-pollution ballots were sent out Friday. I recommend you vote "no" and send the ballot back right away.

Send a message to our city that we want "the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth" if they expect to keep our trust.


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