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Sierra Madre City Council Declares Insufficient Number of Valid Water Protests Received

Official City Response re: Prop. 218 Protest



At the July 27th regular City Council meeting, the Sierra Madre City Council decided to defer any increase in city water rates, even though the majority protest that would have been required to prevent a rate increase was not achieved.  During the meeting, Sierra Madre City Clerk Nancy Shollenberger stated that a total of 1719 valid protests were received, compared to the required majority protest amount of 1847.


Although the Council has the legal authority to increase water rates, the Council decided to defer any increase pending education, outreach and dialogue with the community.  Mayor Joe Mosca stated, “It was clear that a significant number of community members had concerns with the current proposal.” 


The City Council approved a community outreach plan designed to fully explain the current physical condition of the water system, its operating costs and financial obligations and future capital improvements needed to insure its the long-term viability. Just as important, the outreach plan will solicit input from the community regarding their thoughts, concerns and questions about the water system and rate increases.  


Mayor Mosca stated, “The City Council and I want to spend some time communicating the necessity of a rate increase, responding to questions, and explaining the importance of maintaining local control of our water system. Additionally, we want feedback from the entire community on what type of rate increase residents think is appropriate.”   Later this fall, the City Council intends to discuss the pros and cons of increasing the water rates, taking into account the comments and feedback received during this outreach period.   


The Council is reaching out to residents and business owners, asking them to read the literature that will soon be in their mailboxes, and to engage in the water rate dialog at either the upcoming “Walk and Talk” sessions at the Public Works Yard, or at one of three community presentations. 


Walk and Talk

·         Saturday, August 14, 2010 at 10:00 am at the Public Works Yard – 621 E. Sierra Madre Blvd.

·         Wednesday, September 29, 2010 at 6:00 pm at the Public Works Yard – 621 E. Sierra Madre Blvd.


Community Presentations

·         Tuesday, August 17, 2010 at 6:30 pm in the City Council Chambers – 232 W. Sierra Madre Blvd. (This presentation will be aired live and rebroadcasted on SMTV3 and the City website.)

·         Wednesday, September 1, 2010 at 12:30 pm at the Hart Park House Senior Center – 222 W. Sierra Madre Blvd.

·         Monday, September 13, 2010 at 7:00 pm at the Youth Activity Center – 611 E. Sierra Madre Blvd.


Tune into the City’s cable channel, SMTV3, or visit the City’s website for special water department broadcasts.  A schedule of programming will be available soon on the City’s website. 


Community Groups, Homeowner Associations, or individuals interested in hosting a group presentation should contact Elisa Weaver, Director of Community & Personnel Services at 626-355-5278.  Or, for additional information, please contact Sierra Madre City Hall at 626-355-7135.

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