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On May 7 the Fullerton City Council approved two resolutions to charge more money to provide water to the city’s residents. The council unanimously approved a simple pass-through increase to ratepayers to accommodate higher costs charged by the Metropolitan Water District. Such an increase was all but unavoidable.
The other measure, however, adopted in a split vote with Mayor Bruce Whitaker and Councilmember Greg Sebourn dissenting, enshrined a dubious formula for determining the cost of service the city will now charge its own water utility for the foreseeable future.
Last summer a council majority of Bruce Whitaker, Greg Sebourn, and Travis Kiger stripped away a 10% en lieu water fee perpetuated even after 1996‘s Prop. 218 made such levies illegal without approval by voters. It was supposed to be a cost of service fee for water delivery, though it was never applied for such a purpose.
Recognizing that it was wrong to continue an illegal tax, Whitaker, Sebourn and Kiger voted to refund the maximum amount allowable back to the ratepayers. The November election altered these plans, however, by seating new council members who were not as responsive to the taxpayers…