By Rosemarie R. Gaglione
It is true that the City of Oxnard is seeking creative solutions to our General Fund budget woes. However, United Water Conservation District Director Sheldon Berger’s recent suggestion to sell Oxnard’s recycled water to United as a way of filling the City’s budget gap is not a viable option. By law, just as the City cannot transfer payments by the ratepayers to the General Fund, we must keep all revenue from water sales to United in the Water Fund. The law is crystal clear: intermingling these funds is not allowed.
The City is embarking on a Water Resources Management Plan to consider what makes most sense for Oxnard and our neighbors regarding our use, production and sale of groundwater and recycled water. We invite our customers and stakeholders—including Director Berger and the rest of the United Board—to offer input into that process in the coming months. We hope that process helps Oxnard find regional solutions, perhaps in partnership with United, to our collective water problems. Those solutions will not, however, resolve the City’s General Fund budget problems
Rosemarie R Gaglione, PE is Public Works Director for the City of Oxnard
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