Our water situation on the Monterey Peninsula continues to be unresolved and costly. We will be in compliance with the state’s Cease and Desist order on the Carmel River by December 2021 thanks to 3,500 acre-feet of new water supply from Pure Water Monterey. But to lift the moratorium on new hookups we need to move ahead on the expansion of Pure Water Monterey.Sign up
Cal Am and its special interest supporters in agriculture, real estate and hospitality oppose this new water supply, preferring wait on Cal Am’s proposed desal project which may never be built.
PWN advocates public ownership of our water supply system. Private for-profit water systems, like Cal Am, raise the cost of our water and take decisions out of our hands.
In 2018 PWN put Measure J on the ballot. Voters passed it by 56%, mandating that the Monterey Peninsula Water Management District (MPWMD) proceed with a buyout of Cal Am’s local water system if and when feasible. A buyout has been found to be feasible and the process is moving ahead. It is likely that an offer to Cal Am will be made in the Spring of 2021. If Cal Am refuses MPWMD has the authority to use eminent domain to buy the system.
We have the most expensive water in the country according to Food & Water Watch and water bills continue to rise! Many people have seen their bills double or triple since Cal Am revised its rate structure and pricing in March 2017.
Today 87% of U.S. consumers get their water from publicly owned systems for good reason. On average, the cost for privately owned water runs 59% higher than publicly owned water across the country. To put the actual cost of our water in perspective, the average cost of publicly owned water across the country is $315 a year for 60,000 gallons, while the average cost of privately owned water is $500 a year. But here on the Peninsula our cost is now over $1200 a year and it’s much higher than that if you use water in the 3rd or 4th tier!
The number of those in our community favoring public ownership has grown as people begin to understand the benefits. Public Water Now has over 4,000 members currently.
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