12 thoughts on “Council Approves New Water Rates, Structure

  1. This decision explains why many people are involved in the voting process. Also, Councilman Gallagher’s comment, “.. said businesses and even the local military bases do look to the cost of water service as a means of measuring viability of either staying in San Antonio or going elsewhere” is ridiculous. The cost of water will run citizens out of San Antonio quicker than a business or the military and the cost of water would have to be very high for a business or the military with millions and billions of dollars invested in operating in San Antonio to consider leaving. Say what you want about the military/federal government but not even it would say lets invest millions or billions of dollars to relocate out of San Antonio so we can save ourselves a few thousands of dollars in water costs. With that type of thinking I’m even more suspect of the vote yesterday.

        • For a long while there was a note from the listmaster with my initial comment to Mr. Ortiz saying that someone was ‘moderating’ my comment. Maybe it was too long or something and had to be vetted to make sure it could stay on the dialog. Apparently the message passed muster. EB

        • Thanks for your clarification about inserting the word ‘not’ in front of voting. I agree with you about the sense of hopelessness which is driving people away from the voting booths. A former city councilwoman expressed the same perception to me just the other day. EB

  2. Mr. Ortiz:

    You should have stayed after the crowd left for lunch at the mayor’s prompting. I stuck around after most of the crowd(but not SAWS) left for lunch at the Mayor’s suggestion, and spoke on agenda item 22 which involved waiving impact fees for water and sewer services to military installations within the CoSA/SAWS reach. I asked my councilman to find the letter from General La Brutta requesting that fees be waived. I heard that Councilmen Gallagher and Krier (motion and second) have assumed that Joint Base San Antonio would want this waiver because of the demon of sequestration.

    I prefaced my comments on impact fee waivers to council and mostly empty gallery by saying that I had heard that council aides were being subjected to verbal abuse from irate constituents. I made the statement that since council has made an unconscionable decision to the detriment of their working poor and fixed income constituents, I promised to request everyone I know to direct their verbal abuse solely upon this body, and not upon the long suffering folks who field phone calls at city hall.
    I reminded council that the military bases in San Antonio pay not one cent of property tax, and that working people already chip in a sizable share of their federal income taxes to pay for the military’s global operations. I started to say that council could offer Joint Base San Antonio the opportunity to provide in kind environmental services along the lines of the Camp Bullis water capture project in lieu of impact fees, but was interrupted by the Mayor. Council went ahead and approved this possibly unsolicited gift to Joint Base San Antonio unanimously with Councilman Nirenberg standing aside and Councilman Lopez out of the country. EB

    • As a retired officer who sometimes worked with local agreements and infrastructure, I think any request by a commander for “waiving of fees” would be highly suspect. It sounds an awful lot like solicitation of a gift.

      In my time, a local Congressman was lobbying hard for the base to provide a letter to the Texas Legislature saying that a 1604 road project would benefit Randolph (it would have). We were advised at the time to stay out of it, despite the clear benefit.

      • That’s what I thought, and I am not retired military, active duty military, or a civilian employee/contractor. I do have some friends at or above the rank of colonel and I intend to ask about this recent maneuver by the San Antonio city council.

  3. Here is part of what Linda Curtis of Bastrop, from one of the four “forced
    donor” counties for the Vista Ridge Pipeline which includes Burleson, Lee, and Milam counties, had to say to the SA city council on this topic:

    ….”The Chamber of Commerce (the real estate lobby) was all over the news yesterday beating their chests that WE need this water – no, THEY need this water – we, the citizens need fair rates, protection of our water resources and an open and fair process for deciding these mega-projects.
    The Chamber (the real estate lobby) went so far as to say yesterday that the military might
    not want to continue investing in San Antonio if you don’t pass these unfair rates for Vista
    Ridge. Why was the Chamber and not the military saying this?…….”

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