Gilroy Council should stand up for residents against illegal water fees

Letters on the water district fee protest, the proposed Highway
152 toll road, the endorsement for Peter Arellano and the
conservative media
Gilroy Council should stand up for residents against illegal water fees

Dear Editor,

In the April 9 edition, there is an article about the water district vote by the city council. This is a no-brainer. Since the Santa Clara Valley Water District took over from the Gavilan Water District, all we have been seeing are increases in the charges for our water in the county, especially for South County. The fees have gone up. The ground water charges have gone up for everyone.

The city has passed the charges to the citizens of Gilroy, always complaining but never doing anything about it. Don’t say that just nine votes are nothing. Nine votes can make a difference. One vote can make a difference. All it needs is a simple majority.

Vote to petition to say that we do not want the charge to be passed onto the well owners. This is an illegal charge. We did not vote to pay for the water district charges. For 2010-11, everyone who has a well in South County should vote that we do not want to pay the fee that was not voted upon by the well owners.

Don Perino, Gilroy

New Highway 152 toll road just another example of VTA arrogance

Dear Editor,

Reconfirming why your Editorial Board has called for VTA’s termination, with the new VTA transportation plan, unveiled yesterday in Hollister, VTA’s leadership showed us why they earned “worst in the nation” status in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology study of all the nation’s transit agencies.

With disdain and apparently contempt for Gilroy motorists and taxpayers in San Benito County, the new plan would re-route Highway 152 through San Benito County, and collect tolls from all cars and trucks on a per mile basis by automated sensors embedded on all vehicles like GPS systems – all in conjunction with the bullet train construction. The current price tag on bullet train exceeds $81 billion, with annual operating subsidies required from California’s taxpayers in the range of $1 billion per year. The VTA estimate of $1.2 billion for construction of their “To-Heck-With-Gilroy Plan” seems small in comparison, yet by routing it through San Benito County it means that we’ll wait for centuries for that rural, relatively impoverished county to raise the money for the road construction work. 

So, VTA is now going to pass their “F” grade along to Gilroy and South County and San Benito County. Improvements to the Tenth Street exit/interchange in Gilroy will be put on hold even though VTA has billions to spend on boondoggles like Lite Rail and BART-to-San Jose. No wonder they kept they’re meetings a secret, hidden from the public and the press, until the taxpayers obtained the Attorney General’s Opinion and sued them to obey the Sunshine in Government Act (“Brown Act”).  

Once again VTA shows why the County Grand Jury has indicted it for governance flaws, taxpayer abuse, and fiscal irresponsibility twice in the past five years. Yet our leaders let them plow ahead with the same damaging policy. How long will we allow them to do this to us?

Joseph P. Thompson, Gilroy

SC Democratic Club endorsed Peter Arellano ‘fair and square’

Dear Editor,

Peter Arellano was chosen fair and square!

I wanted to reply to Swanee Edwards’ recent letter regarding the fairness of Arellano’s endorsement from the South County Democratic Club.

I am a member on the endorsement committee and was closely involved in the process. All members who join the club 30 days prior to the endorsement are entitled to vote. All three candidates were allowed to encourage their supporters to join under these rules. Some members recently joined and some are long-term members like me. I also paid my dues in cash, and that has nothing to do with the endorsement process or it’s validity.

I actually attended the meeting too, and their was strong support in the crowd for Arellano because he’s the local candidate and because he has been a long-term member. The other candidates have been short-term members, too!

He is also very informed of the issues, and in my opinion, would make a very good supervisor. He is an doctor and 50 percent of the county budget is medically related.

Actually, all three Democratic candidates gave very good information to the club. This was a very fair election, apparently won by a very good community organizer and long-term club member. I would recommend we keep our representation local. As Tip O’Neill said, “all politics is local!”

Daniel J. Kenney, Morgan Hill

Conservative media can’t take the latest Democratic win away

Dear Editor,

The first post-Health Care Reform election was held but you won’t see it on the cable news networks because a Democrat won. On April 13, Democrat Ted Deutch beat Republican Ed Lynch 62 to 35 percent in a special election for Congress held in Florida. It was billed as a referendum on health care, the Obama administration and the direction that America is heading.

If a Republican had won the news coverage would be continuous and hailed as the end of the Democratic party. But when Democrats win elections the Republican owned media doesn’t say a word about it.

I don’t know why the media is on a mission to elect Republicans this year but we took back America in 2008 and we aren’t going to give it up in 2010 in spite of media bias.

Marc Perkel, Gilroy