Letters to the Editor

Why doesn’t city ask ratepayers about water utility÷ |Letters | Nov. 4?

Management of the city water utility is steaming like a teakettle on a hot political stove, with candidates whistling their opinions to anyone who’ll listen.

But ratepayers are not being fairly represented in the debate. Only 10 percent of all islanders are water ratepayers. In my opinion, the city doesn’t represent them; nor does council doesn’t represent them for the Utility Advisory Committee’s final report.

Members of the UAC who are connected to city water wanted the utility turned over to KPUD; members not connected to city water wanted the city bureaucracy to continue managing the utility. Ex-officio member Barry Peters wants the city to run the water utility, while Bill Knobloch wants it turned over to KPUD.

I’m surprised city water ratepayers aren’t dumping tea into Eagle Harbor demanding better representation. It’s their money on the table.

There is a simple way to ask those most directly involved: each ratepayer gets a monthly bill, so it would be easy to do a non-binding poll by enclosing a ballot with the bill – and let those who pay for city water express their opinions.

The pro-con (KPUD or COBI) arguments have already been written: the majority and minority reports from the UAC. The  council should ask the water ratepayers for their opinion; why not?

Neil C. Johannsen, Winslow

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