The Town of Apple Valley goes full xenophobe — and fails (March 18, 2015)

I think it’s time for someone to call out the Town of Apple Valley for the desperate attempt to instill fear in people regarding the Liberty Utilities purchase of Park Water and Apple Valley Ranchos (Acquiring Ranchos Water Company is right move for Apple Valley, Daily Press, March 8, 2015). In the form of constant mailers, brochures, email blasts (that AV residents are paying for), and speeches at hearings, the Town repeatedly reminded everybody that not only was Liberty Utilities from out of town, but they were foreign and foreigners.

Who were they warning people about? The Chinese? The North Koreans? The Iranians?

No. It is Canadians. The same wonderful people who brought us Molson, maple syrup, and Mike Myers.

For a town whose entrance signs read, We are building an inclusive community, they’re not acting very inclusive.

But the best thing about this desperate tactic is that it backfired. At the Liberty Utilities purchase hearings I attended, opponents of the purchase outnumbered supporters by 2-1.

Last November, the Town of Apple Valley made state and national news because one of its leading Town Council candidates, Richard Bunck, had a neo-Nazi past. The candidates who won — Nassif, Emick, and Stanton — and the rest of the Council did their best to assure the rest of California that Apple Valley isn’t just a bunch of racists.

But now they are going out of their way to underline how supposedly foreign the new AV Ranchos owners are. Never mind that almost every owner of Apple Valley Ranchos Company in its 65-year history lived outside of the Town. Never mind that the people who will continue to run Apple Valley Ranchos are the ones who live and work here in Apple Valley. Never mind that Liberty Utilities has proposed bringing more jobs to Apple Valley.

Our Town can do much better than this. And with the drubbing they got at these hearings, hopefully, they learned their lesson.

Greg Raven is Co-Chair of Apple Valley Citizens for Government Accountability, and is concerned about quality of life issues.


Webmaster note: Seems a little bit like old times, doesn’t it?