The Friendship of Vallecitos Customers (FVC), a group of the largest Vallecitos Water District (VWD) customers, potential political candidates, past board members, and community leaders, formed to have a unified voice to influence the VWD Board of Directors (the Board) to maintain a ratepayer focus. Since the 2012 elections, the development community has had majority control of the Board. Developer influence and financial mismanagement have resulted in ratepayers paying $42.2 million in developer obligations. Ratepayers have not had either the will or ability to financially contribute, and therefore win favor, to the extent that developers have financially contributed to the Board.
A word about the development community
Our purpose is not to villainize developers/builders and the Building Industry Association. Many builders have a charitable presence in our community. They also serve to satisfy much needed housing in communities like ours. Developers can pay up to scores of thousands of dollars in municipal and utility permitting and fees to build a house before even driving a stake in the ground. As business leaders, they have every right to try and maintain their fees as low as possible. Developers may not be aware of the negative consequences political favoritism towards them has had on ratepayers. We hope that developers work with political leaders to find ways to pay for their impacts other than through Vallecitos customer rate increases.