Earlier this month Terri Sforza wrote about a possible merger between Metropolitan Water District and the Orange County Water District. For years the Orange County Register has pointed out the redundant and ridiculous overlaps in these two agencies and how it makes sense for taxpayers, or rate payers depending on your view of payments to government bureaucracies.
How much money would be saved by such a merger seems to be open to debate but Sforza thinks at least $1-million right from the start. Putting the $1-million in perspective, Sforza notes that it is just a drop in the $300-million revenue bucket for the agencies.
Currently, the Orange County Water District is a “member agency” of the MWDOC. These multiple layers of bureaucracy removes the people, water users and voters, further from the decision-making table. Perhaps a merger will bring Fullerton voters and water users closer to the table of managements’ fiduciary responsibility to the people they serve.
As it stands, Fullerton voters get one single vote from Mayor Pro Tem Don Bankhead who represents Fullerton voters on the OCWD Board of Directors. That is one vote out of ten cast on each issue before the Board.
No one knows what a merger will mean for Fullerton. All we can do is wonder if a bigger water agency equates to a better water agency for those who foot the bill. If history has taught us anything it is that bigger government is not better government.
REMINDER: The Water Rate Study Ad Hoc Committee’s last meeting is tonight at 6:30PM at Fullerton City Hall. Don’t be shy, we’re in this together. Speak now or pay later!