Community Deserves Accurate Information Before Purchase




Since early last November I have been trying to get the PSWID board to correct six major errors in the cash flow and rate impact analysis, or explain to me why they aren’t errors. Mr. Dan Jackson of sent me an unsatisfactory response to my questions about those errors. When I pointed out problems with his answers and asked some additional questions about the report, I was informed by the board that they wouldn’t be talking to me anymore. I prepared a report describing each of the errors and provided a corrected set of numbers for the cash flow and rate impacts. The corrected set of numbers shows that rate increases will be immediate and much larger than those shown by the report.

In a Feb. 17 letter to the editor, Mr. Haney broke his vow of silence on the topic. He referenced a Feb. 10 letter from Mr. Jackson to the PSWID board that addressed the report that I produced. In his response, Mr. Jackson admits the existence of one of the errors. For two errors, Mr. Jackson agrees that they would be errors, but is unsure about what the data in the ACC report means. In my response to him, I have provided the information to show that they are, in fact, errors. For another two errors, Mr. Jackson provides an explanation of how the numbers were arrived at. Neither explanation holds up, as both are at odds with what the board has been publicly saying its approach will be to operating the water system. Mr. Jackson avoids addressing the final error.

Mr. Haney and Mr. Jackson have questioned whether I have the right credentials to be able to point out these errors. None of these errors require any special water-related skills to detect. They just require an open mind and some effort to find. I have spent a significant amount of time over the last 15 months becoming familiar with the public data related to the water issues for Pine-Strawberry. I have spent much of my 28 years as an engineer analyzing data and building projections from data.

Mr. Jackson says that the report will be updated at the “appropriate time.” The appropriate time is now. The board and need to correct the six errors and provide an updated report to the community as soon as possible. The people in this community deserve to have accurate information before the PSWID board commits us to a purchase that will cost many millions of dollars.

With regard to the trash talking directed at me by Mr. Haney and Mr. Jackson, my experience has been that those who resort to that are trying to distract others from noticing how flimsy their position is.

My response to Mr. Jackson’s letter to the PSWID board can be found here:

Sam Schwalm


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