As the prop 218 protest to stop the water rate increase gains momentum, I wanted to relate my experience as I go door to door collecting signatures and talking to people. With the exception of a very few, people are expressing their thanks that we are doing this. I have heard so many stories from people about their hardships and how they can’t afford their bill already much less an increase to it.
If our city officials would get down in the trenches and actually talk to the people they serve, they wouldn’t have come up with such a painful and impossible solution. But they sit on high and look down on us as if they just know we have a secret stash of money we could be giving them. This is the disconnect between what those in power think and reality knows. How are they ever going to deal with the reality of what we need as a city that includes all of the people who live in it, not just the people they wish were here, if they don’t get out and talk to everyone?
As elected officials it would best serve the public interest if the council members and even city staff would get out of their comfort zone and go door to door and talk to their constituents. Donna Westfall did that. Her door was open to anyone and everyone, and she listened then looked for solutions. She was branded a trouble maker for doing her job the way it should’ve been done. Is our current council so above the fray that they deem it beneath them to mingle with the common folk? I don’t say this because I’m a friend of Donna’s but as an astute observer of the human condition.
I challenge the council to get out and talk to people about how their lives are going. If they spent 5 minutes listening, and not trying to convince people of their lies that this rate increase is the only solution, I think they would be better prepared to come up with an actual solution that has a chance of working. Asking people with nothing, to give what they don’t have, is not going to work.
Crescent City, Ca.