Cal Am Wants a Rate Increase...
Tell the CPUC NO!
For the past 10 years Cal Am has increased Monterey Peninsula bills by 17% per year on average! To a great extent this has been done with Alternative Ratemaking Mechanisms and surcharges. Here’s how we got to the most expensive water in the country.
Cal Am is claiming that they are asking for an 18% increase over three years, BUT they will also be asking for another 15% to 20% in surcharges that they are not talking about.
We need your comments to stop the CPUC from approving Cal Am’s rate increases in their current General Rate Case (GRC) A1907004 and to limit them from using Alternative Ratemaking Mechanisms and Surcharges to increase our bills in the future.
Post Your Comment on the CPUC website
Your comments are very important in this case to support the recommendations of the Public Advocates Office. They are the agency that is fighting on behalf of Cal Am ratepayers. Comments posted on the website will become part of the record and be delivered to the five CPUC Commissioners.
Please include these points:
• Discontinue or limit surcharges and Alternative Ratemaking Mechanisms. This includes all of the various memorandum and balancing accounts and WRAM charges.
• Limit surcharges to 20% of total residential bill.
• Reinstate an earnings test before authorizing surcharges to make sure Cal Am is not getting more than its authorized 9.2% rate of return.
Cal Am’s Desal in Limbo...
Coastal Commission May Vote in June
The Coastal Commission staff report recommended denial of Cal Am’s desal project permit last November. In January they recommended Cal Am withdraw it’s permit application. Instead Cal Am asked for a 90-day extension which will expire July 2020.
The Coastal Commission may vote on this at their June meeting in the Sonoma area. But Cal Am my still withdraw its application before that meeting. Sadly instead of listening to the Coastal Commission, Cal Am has used this time to lobby state agencies and attack the Water Management District's Supply and Demand Report.
We don't need it. We can't afford it.
Pure Water Monterey is now producing water, 3,500 acre-feet of it annually! This water is being injected into the Seaside Groundwater Basin. In May Cal Am will begin delivering it. With this new water supply we only need another 800 acre-feet of water to meet the CDO requirement to stop over pumping the Carmel River.
The Pure Water Monterey Expansion can easily meet that need and give us plenty of water for 20 to 30 years of growth. It can meet the CDO requirement and lift the moratorium on new water hookups. And it would cost us $1 billion less than Cal Am’s desal. But Cal Am is refusing to buy this water.
Despite the evidence to the contrary, Cal Am continues to claim that the Pure Water Monterey Expansion is not enough water and is not drought proof.
But the real reason that Cal Am doesn’t want to buy this water is that it would earn about $120 million in profit on the desal project and nothing on the Pure Water Monterey Expansion.
Can Politics Trump a Cost Effective Water Supply?
Cal Am’s allies at the state an local level are trying to defeat the Pure Water Monterey Expansion in favor of Cal Am’s desal.
When the facts are not on Cal Am’s side, it resorts to the “lie repeated a thousand times” strategy. Cal Am stands to make $120 million in profit on this desal. It’s really that simple.
It’s crazy to ask Cal Am ratepayers to spend $1.2 billion for a desal plant they don’t need when Pure Water Monterey could be expanded for about $60 million.
The PWM Expansion could meet the CDO requirement and lift the moratorium on new water hook ups in about 18 months.
How long will we allow Cal Am to hold our community’s water supply hostage?
Director, Public Water Now