San Juan Capistrano

Guest Column

Together We Can Fight City Hall!

By Derek Reeve, Esq. 
San Juan Capistrano City Council member

This is a call to action! As many of you know, the council majority of Sam Allevato, Larry Kramer and John Taylor demand that water rates be increased. Councilmember Byrnes and I alone cannot stop the water rate increase however, with your help we can. Proposition 218 requires that if "a majority" of ratepayers protest the water rate increase, the council majority cannot approve it.

Water rate protests must be in written form and signed by the tenant or homeowner whose name is on the water bill. You may download a Water Rate protest form from the Capistrano Taxpayers Association website at:

Once the form is completed and signed, it must be either mailed or hand delivered to the City Clerk, however be sure they arrive before the end of the Proposition 218 Water Rate Hearing on June 17 or they will not count.

Second, I would like to set the record straight. The council majority is attempting to spin that I support a rate increase because I do not support the illegal tiered rate system. Let me be clear; while I absolutely support a uniform or flat rate, I absolutely do not support a rate increase. What I support is getting out of the water business which would actually reduce rates for everyone. If we continue to operate the Ground Water Recovery Plant which is the position that the council majority supports, we can expect our water rates to increase, as the water plant is just too expensive to operate - especially since the San Juan Basin is already at or dangerously close to sea level, which puts it at risk for sea water intrusion.

Derek Reeve, a Constitutional Law attorney, was elected to the SJC City Council in 2010. He has been a resident of San Juan since 1998, where he resides with his wife and two stepsons.

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