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Vallecitos Water District is holding a Public Hearing on water rate increases February 27, 5 PM. Download template protest letters. About the Rate Hearing and rate increases. Attend the hearing and tell the Board to stop using ratepayers’ money to subsidize development.

Nominate Vallecitos for a Golden Fleece Award

The San Diego County Taxpayers Association hosts the “Goldens” every year, to showcase the best and worst in public policy – the worst being the Golden Fleece Award. One nomination may not get their attention. We need as many ratepayers as possible to nominate Vallecitos. Please download this Nomination Form and Supporting Materials and submit through the SDCTA website by February 20.

We are raising awareness and understanding of why Vallecitos Water District rates are high, and what can be done about it.


Vallecitos has sent out notices of a Public Rate Hearing to be held February 27, 2020, 5 pm. Protest the rate increase – Required:

  1. Addressed to Vallecitos Water District ATTN: Rate Hearing, 201 Vallecitos de Oro, San Marcos, CA 92069
  2. From property owner – it could be from the renter if the renter is billed directly, but only one protest per parcel
  3. State that you are “opposed to the proposed water rate increases”
  4. Provide the location of the property (by street address, assessor’s parcel number, or customer account number)
  5. Include the name and signature of the property owner or tenant submitting the protest


  1. Include statements like:
    1. Raise developer fees not ours
    2. Stop subsidizing developers with our money
    3. Issue bonds to fund development instead of using our money
  2. If the notice was post-marked after January 13, state so in the letter and state the hearing date is not in compliance with Proposition 218 45-day notice requirements.
  3. Protest letter templates

San Marcos Water and Politics: The Price We Paid

On October 23, Former Vallecitos Water District CFO Tom Scaglione, presented a lecture during Palomar College Political Economy Days on San Marcos Water and Politics: The Price We Paid.

Since 2013, Vallecitos customers paid $54 million toward developer obligations. That’s 16% of your water and sewer bill that you should not have paid.

Recent Board action has ensured that customers will pay up to another $35 million in the next five years to subsidize development – per their own financial forecast.

People ask me why hasn’t the media picked this up. The behind the scenes finance and political influence is difficult to understand. Developer special interests are well funded and wield significant local power. It would take confident understanding and rare courage for a journalist to take this on. Thank you to Stephanie Stang from Coast News who did cover the lecture. Check out her article.

Watch the recorded lecture and view the presentation slides to learn how this happened and what can be done about it. Encourage all Vallecitos Water District customers you know to watch as well.  Facebook postings would greatly be appreciated.

Attend VWD Board Meetings

Vallecitos Water District Board of Directors meets every first and third Wednesday of each month at 5 pm. Attend and provide public comment expressing your concern about the breaks given to developers at the expense of ratepayers. For agendas and more information.

Get the confidence you need to address the Vallecitos Board of Directors. Get educated. View FVC’s GET EDUCATED and RATEPAYER EQUITY COALITION pages.

BIA and Developer Payments to Martin and Sannella

Vallecitos Water District (VWD) Board Members Mike Sannella and Hal Martin receive campaign contributions from the Building Industry Association (BIA) and developers. Even though the two-member standing committees of VWD must, by policy, rotate members every year, Sannella and Martin have remained the only members of VWD’s Finance Committee since 2014. Since then VWD ratepayers have paid $54 million to amass reserves, fund the developer deficit, and pay for future developer obligations. Also, since then, not one action item has come before the Board regarding long-range financial planning. Learn more at https://friendshipvallecitoswater.org/get-educated/#developer-contributions

The Political Shift that Cost Water Customers Millions

In 2013, newly elected officials of the Vallecitos Water District broadened their scope to include growing the economy.

“The District’s interest has to do with providing basic services, sewer and water, at the best price. That’s all it is. It has nothing to do with helping out developers.” Jim Poltl, Former Member of the Board of Directors

In response, “I look at the bigger picture – economic stimulus. Smaller governmental agencies … make that happen.” Hal Martin, Member of the Board of Directors

Would the economy have grown without the breaks given to developers? Did we pay more for water to stimulate the economy? Or did we just bolster developer profit margins?

FVC Member List

Some Vallecitos customers fear political vindictiveness by the VWD Board majority if they associate with opposition. FVC will post a Member List only after at least 100 ratepayers Join FVC. There is strength in numbers – a voice to be heard. JOIN FVC now.

Developer funds (developer fees paid less expenditures to offset impacts from development) plummeted to record deficits when development in San Marcos soared! Why? Visit RATEPAYER EQUITY COALITION

How was the developer deficit funded? Visit RATEPAYER EQUITY COALITION