Thursday, June 25, 2009
City Council rejects water rate hike
City Council has just approved a 2009—2010 budget while rejecting the 6% water rate hike staff was requesting.
The water rate will remain the same as in 2009 when a 9% water rate increase took effect this past January.
While discussing the proposed water rate increase both the City Council and the City Staff took great care to avoid any mention of the fact that less water is being sold these years.
It would be downright dangerous for citizens to learn that less water is needed today than in 1995 when the scam for the dam was forming. Citizens might begin asking why Greensboro is increasing its water supply by 75% at a cost of $70 million when water use is declining.
Greensboro is in its 15th year of propaganda releases about its "water scarcity." The objective is to cement the “necessity” of the Randleman Dam in citizens’ minds ...and keep their wallets wide open for the needed funds.
Greensboro's best one-million-gallon-a day water customers--textile mills--have relocated to Asia and now the residents must make up for all the lost revenue. The only people who know this are you---the readers of my blog.
Low reservoirs by design
During non-drought years Greensboro's reservoirs were lowered on purpose for the visual effect they would achieve. The dam scammer’s efforts won broad support for the grab of Randleman’s water because they made it look like Greensboro was "running out of water."
Greensboro citizens became so convinced about water scarcity that if Mars had water they would fund a “galactic pipeline” to go after it. And that’s exactly where the dam scammers want the people—uninformed and fearful that Greensboro is short on water. It isn't. Greensboro has an adequate supply of water. And Greensboro could add lots more water to its supply with a fraction of its investment in Randleman's water. For example, Greensboro could begin a water conservation program. FACT: Greensboro quietly ended its award-winning water conservation program about 5 years ago.
Dam spin Dam spin is on everything said and everything published by the City of Greensboro. The City has lied, falsified reports, rejected best management practices, eliminated its water conservation program and suppressed information like declining water use to insure the acquisition of Randleman water continues without any hiccups. And thanks to the total silence from Greensboro’s news media the citizens remain duped and willing to pay the bill.
The money has to come from somewhere On Monday, water resources director Allan Williams offered the council members an alternative plan to take $2.1 million out of the department’s reserve (citizen’s money) for the year. He said that aging water lines need to be replaced. I don’t doubt that. It's what Williams won't say that is important---that water use is declining and so are his water sales.
Just remember, Williams cannot give you the real reason for needing more funds. I can. Water sales are way down and yet the waterworks continues to expand. That means more revenue is needed for operations and expansion. It will either come from rate hikes .....or the Greensboro treasury. When asked what happens if he does not get his 6% hike in January, Williams said it will be 10% in July.
Council decided there will be no water rate increase this coming year. Williams says the needed $2.1 million will instead come from the "water reserve fund." To drink you must pay. The money has to come from somewhere.
Obsessed with GROWTH
Greensboro has always been obsessed with growth. Most residents are aware of that. And most residents know that the City Government of Greensboro always gets what it wants. Fifteen years ago when the foundation for the dam scam was being laid, insiders had become convinced that water was needed for Greensboro’s growth. It was NOT needed for survival as they claimed. That was a lie.
The dam scammers knew that rate-payers and taxpayers would not fund the Randleman Dam for GROWTH. So what did they do? They tricked citizens into funding the Randleman Dam for SURVIVAL.
There's no better way to get people's attention about water than to run out of it. And that's what their scheme was--to appear that Greensboro was running out of water. And once that fear took hold, they knew that citizens would fund the Randleman Dam and state and federal authorities would have no choice but to approve it.
It was a perfect plan and it worked. Greensboro propaganda and photos of dry reservoirs made everyone a believer. In 1999 I told one of my pastors that water use had gone down 3 straight years. He said, "Mike, that cannot possibly be true." I could not convince my own pastor of an irrefutable fact. Arrrgh!
And when I told N&R editor John Robinson numerous times that water use was going down he turned a deaf ear. Once he even said to me, "Well, we have a water conservation program now, so water use SHOULD be going down. That's not news when something is supposed to happen and it happens."
The only glitch to the dam scam was the drought. While the City was selling down its reservoirs for visual effect, along came a drought and caught City Hall completely off guard. The drought made the water managers crap in their pants and Ed Kitchen crap in his pants. The City had created such a high demand for lawn water that the reservoirs were down when the drought hit. Suddenly Greensboro had no water to sell. Greensboro was actually facing a federally ordered evacuation if the reservoirs ran dry.
I was there and I saw how it all came down. The tension was real. Right after I designed this billboard that went up on High Point Road I was fired. Greensboro got caught selling off its supply of water to justify the Randleman Dam. One hand did not know what the other was doing. City Hall was in panic mode.
I knew the truth and I would not lie for my bosses. I knew that Randleman Dam was a terrible solution to a simple problem. Several City incentives were actually encouraging lawn watering to run the reservoirs dry and convince everyone that Randleman Dam was needed by 2000.
IT WAS SO SIMPLE: Solve lawn watering and you solve Greensboro's water shortage. It was so easy to do, but Greensboro officials like Mayor Allen, City Manager Ed Kitchen and Water Director Allan Williams wanted the dam at any cost so they put the City at great risk. The rest of the City Council became dam scammers because of their silence.
Once the dam was finally approved Greensboro took immediate steps to reverse the numerous incentives it had placed on lawn watering. The result was more water in the reservoirs.
It's simple. To justify any public works project, simply demonstrate that the current program or service is inadequate and a threat to operations. You would think the news media would be suspicious about expansion projects like the Randleman Dam. Nope.
Since the beginning of time countries have proven that they will do ANYTHING for more water---including going to war. Greensboro’s dam scammers never invaded Randleman with tanks and troops, but their tactics were covert. The "ends justified the means" in their minds, so lying and cheating to get at Randleman’s water was permissible. The displaced farmers, the people down steam, me and my family and my career---we were all just collateral damage in a covert effort to grow Greensboro to compete with Charlotte and Raleigh.
You can hire a hit man for about ten grand. With $150 million dollar project up for grabs, plenty of underhanded things get done. People get crushed. Isn't it interesting that the Greensboro news media cannot a thing wrong with a $150 million deal. It is suspect of no wrong doing at all.
The grab for Randleman water
(Click on graphic to view full size)
Water runs uphill Greensboro obtained a state permit to withdraw up to 28 million gallons a day from the Deep River and never replace it. That means the geography downstream from the Randleman Dam will be missing 28 million gallons per day of Deep River water.
You could say that water always flows from higher ground to lower ground—except when power and money cause it to change direction, defy nature and actually flow uphill---to Greensboro.
Randleman water will increase Greensboro’s water reserves by 75% (SOURCE: City of Greensboro web page)
Greensboro's waterworks is expanding by 75% while its water use is shrinking. And you are among the very few who know.
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Posted by Mike J Baron at 8:31 AM