Asking Questions Without Intimidation

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Editor:

I was an attendee at the PSWID budget meeting and I do some of the research for the WaterForPineStrawberry.com Web site. Sure enough the leaders of the Rim Country Water (RCW) group surfaced again to mount another assault on Water For Pine Strawberry (WFPS). It is ironic that they claim our summaries to be inaccurate and malicious, yet they don’t offer any proof.

The public may well remember a few of the written, misleading statements made by Messrs. Krafczyk, Greer, Dickinson, Calderon et al during their RCW campaign to take over the Pine and Strawberry water companies.

RCW claimed that the current water rates could cover financing to purchase the water companies. In their five-year plan there would be no increase to the current rates. That the cost of a fully functioning deep well in Pine was $250,000. Look at your year-round water bills and tax levy and you already know the result.

As to the WFPS summaries being malicious, RCW has to be kidding! I recall the public statements made by them accusing a former PSWID board member of negotiating for himself and having a conflict of interest. That Steve Olea (now director of Utilities Division at the ACC) did not know what he was talking about. That anyone questioning RCW goals was financed by Brooke Utilities. A member called me a derogatory name and asked if I was here legally. I think you get the picture as to who is malicious and inaccurate.

Chairman Lovetro rudely denied me the opportunity to ask a question at the budget meeting. He interrupted me before I was half way through and wouldn’t let me finish. He said rates weren’t up for discussion, but half a dozen other people had asked rate related questions. Silly me, I thought the budget was based on water rates and tax levies. The question was: “Payson Roundup recently posted the base water fees by city. Looking at the Payson base rate and calculating what they charge for 3,000 gallons it is $26.99. This takes into account the cost of the $32 million pipeline. In Pine and Strawberry we pay $36.00 including 3,000 gallons, which means we are paying over 33 percent more than Payson. Why?”

In closing I am not one of the “important people” but I do attend PSWID meetings. I will continue to politely ask questions when appropriate, and will not be intimidated.

Pam Mason

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