Letter to the Editor: Water takeover costs
(Letter to the Editor published in The Daily Press on Feb. 5, 2016)
On the front page of today's "Apple Valley" section of the Daily Press appears an article entitled "Acquisition costs top $1 million." This, of course, is referencing the Town of Apple Valley's attempt to acquire what used be called Apple Valley Ranchos Water Company (now named Liberty Utilities, Apple Valley) via eminent domain.
Let me state from the outset, I'm no big fan of Apple Valley Ranchos, but I am also no fan of what I consider this attempt to be, an abuse of the use of eminent domain by the Town Council of Apple Valley. I also believe (based upon working for a municipality for more than 30+ years) that a "service based" organization such as the Town of Apple Valley, that is funded through the collection of taxes, has no business running a "profit based" business.
What is even more shameful and disgusting is that the town has already spent more than $1 million (and of course the most going to attorneys, God love 'em) and the future holds a price tag of at least three times that amount. To add possible insult to injury, it remains to be seen if the court agrees that the Town Council can legally use eminent domain in such a case of forcing a sale of a private business under these circumstances.
Such expenditures are in my humble opinion an irresponsible and complete abuse of fiduciary responsibility by elected officials and that egos have gotten the better of rational and sane thinking. What a waste of our tax dollars!
Further, the Town Council members have now backed themselves into a corner because they've spent $1 million and are on a path where turning back is no longer an option as they don't want to be seen as weak and spineless. Politicians, we've seen, have egos that surpass all common sense.
One thing for sure is I can't wait for voting day when the name(s) of the Town Council folks appear on the ballot. I think I'll write in the name of "Mickey Mouse," which better identifies someone who is driven by community service and common sense rather than an egotistic attitude. Add this to the stunt of the bridge to nowhere (sorry Victorville).
Alex Varga, Apple Valley