Monterey Herald, April 5, 2014
"...we see Measure O as almost
Monterey Herald, Dec. 10, 2013
In these staggering numbers, there are simple truths that cannot be avoided.
Monterey Herald, Dec. 9, 2013
Ratepayers have the power to assure the occurrence of the best case scenario.
Monterey Herald, Oct. 16, 2013
That loud gurgling sound you hear from Cal Am in its opposition to eminent domain is its gasping for air.
WaterPlus endorses Brenda Lewis for Monterey Peninsula Water Management District board.
Debt Facts and Figures
Cal Am currently charges ratepayers 6.63% on debt, 9.9% on equity, and 8.41% on debt plus equity. A public utility owner would today (2013) likely charge ratepayers no more than 3.5% on debt and nothing on equity or debt plus equity (called the "rate base"). In this calculation, equity is determined by the CPUC and has nothing to do with fair-market value, which is equal to debt plus actual equity. This (fair-market) value for Cal Am was appraised to be $94 million in late 2011. Cal Am's current debt is $59,113,028. Its equity as determined by the CPUC is equal to 53 times its debt divided by 47, or $66,659,372, so that its debt plus equity (rate base) is equal to $125,772,400.
Use this information, together with the above mortgage calculator, to compare Cal Am and public-ownership costs for removing the San Clemente Dam ($49 million debt) and building a new desalination plant ($210 million debt for the plant plus $110 million debt for the pipe to Seaside), excluding annual operation-and-maintenance costs (assumed equal for public or private ownership). Use a 20-year loan for the dam and a 30-year loan for the desalination plant.
You can also use this calculator to estimate the net cost to ratepayers of a purchase of Cal Am by a public agency. This would be a low-ball estimate because it does not take into account income and property taxes (not paid by a public agency) or the cost of interaction with the CPUC (required only for a private company). Enjoy!
This 24-minute segment of the "Your Town" TV program aired on 6/24/2013, and was hosted by Carmelita Garcia, former Mayor of Pacific Grove, CA.
State Water Board Review, June 2013
On June 4th the State Water Board held a public hearing on its review of the proposed Cal Am project requested by the CPUC.
WaterPlus was one of a handful of parties who had responded in writing to the review.
"MONTEREY PENINSULA: THE LAST RESORT"
Cal Am vs. Public Ownership:
Charts for easy online Viewing:
PowerPoint files to download
for offline viewing
(Viewing requires Microsoft PowerPoint™)
New Items, March 2014!
Invited Responses by WaterPlus
On Feb. 28, ALJ Seaneen McCarthy Wilson invited responses to two queries. Click the link above to view the March 14 responses by WaterPlus. (This document is an 8-page pdf to download or read online, depending on your browser settings.)
Judge's decision affects desal plans
Monterey Herald, March 7, 2014
Guest Commentary by Ron Weitzman
Recent Items, February 2014
Reply Brief before the Public Utilitites Commission 2/14/2014 (pdf)
Commentary in the Monterey Herald by Ron Weitzman, Feb 9, 2014
Opening Brief before the Public Utilitites Commission 1/24/2014 (pdf)
Sizing Agreement 7/31/2013 (pdf)
(Please Note: Your individual browser settings will determine whether you download these pdf files or view them online.)
Securitization Legislation proposed by the Water Management District.
View PDF by clicking here.
August 2013: Settlement Agreement by parties to Cal Am's water-project application, and the WATERPLUS response to it.
"In the 13,089 words of the agreement the word 'ratepayers' is tellingly absent"
Guest Commentary by Ron Weitzman in the Pacific Grove Cedar Street Times, August 20, 2013
"There is a third water supply option"
Guest Commentary by Ron Weitzman, Monterey County Herald, June 21, 2013
23-page testimony filed by Ron Weitzman in April, 2013, to the California Public Utilities Commission. Click here to view/download the pdf.
(Your own computer settings will determine whether you download this file or view it online.)
Since the collapse of the regional desalination project, in which WaterPlus advocated for community control by promoting the municipalization of Cal Am, WaterPlus has expanded its mission as follows: To advocate in behalf of local Cal Am ratepayers for an adequate and affordable water supply by all reasonable means, including (its original mission) the persuasion or creation of a public agency to purchase Cal Am.
To implement this new mission, WaterPlus is promoting the development of a desalination plant that will be sufficiently large to constitute a drought-proof water supply for the Monterey Peninsula, at the least possible cost to local ratepayers.
Open letter to the
Pacific Grove City Council
(Monterey Herald, Jan 2, 2013).
Open letter to the
Monterey County Board of Supervisors
(Monterey Herald, Dec 12, 2012).
Cal-Am’s plan to crush opposition and raise prices was recently unintentionally exposed in an internationally distributed article entitled Ten Companies to Invest in Over the Next Decade.
Cal-Am is owned lock, stock and barrel by the American Water Works Company, a huge New Jersey corporation.
AWK (as the company is listed on the New York stock exchange) in turn is heavily owned by European share holders, of whom the key ownership is German.