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Measure S would extend Water District tax indefinitely

Original post made on Oct 6, 2020

Should an existing property tax that has eight more years to go be extended indefinitely? This is the question being placed before voters on Nov. 3 by Santa Clara Valley Water District's Measure S.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, October 5, 2020, 12:29 PM

Comments (2)

1 person likes this
Posted by Tom Rindfleisch
a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 6, 2020 at 1:23 pm

Tom Rindfleisch is a registered user.

I was an author and signatory of a letter from Crescent Park residents supporting the passage of Measure S as noted in Ms Dremann’s article. I want to underscore my continuing strong support for passage of the measure. My reasoning is simple. One of the arguments of those opposing passage is that the current Measure B does not expire until 2028. That leaves 7 years until the sunset and they claim that leaves plenty of time to complete pending flood protections to San Francisquito Creek (SFC) and other projects. I would point out that we have worked and waited 22 years for SFC flood repairs (more than 3 times the term the current measure has left). After all that time, we still have nothing tangible to show for our work and planning to improve protection for the Crescent Park and Duveneck/St. Francis neighborhoods that were so heavily affected ($40M worth) in the 1998 flood. This is not the fault of the Water District. The project involves coordination among 5 local government jurisdictions. We still face permitting, funding, and execution challenges (including pending opposition law suits). Seven years will evaporate quickly and even if successful by the skin of our teeth, there remain other longer term challenges for adequate flood protection.

I participated for 5 years as a citizen advisor on a Stanford University study of the future of Searsville Dam. This is relevant because current flood control upgrade plans for SFC will protect against a 70-year flood (the 7,200 cfs flow of record in 1998). We will still be short of the 100-year protection required by FEMA to remove flood insurance requirements on local properties, and to increase protection against the vagaries of what climate change may bring us in extreme weather events. The Searsville study resulted in a recommendation by Stanford to reconfigure Searsville in a way that would dovetail with the downstream improvements to SFC and raise the flood protection to at least the 100-year level. This additional project is expensive and will require time, funding, and cooperation to bring it to fruition to meet up with downstream reaches.

Another long-term threat comes from climate change with sea level rise that threatens to inundate many areas of the SF Bay shoreline, including areas of Palo Alto and other Santa Clara County communities. Continuing the planning, design, and execution of needed shoreline upgrades will require solid funding support and will last well beyond the 7-year sunset of the current Measure B. For these reasons, despite long discussions and disagreements about perceived defects in Measure S, I strongly support its passage as a reasonable compromise to continue Water District stewardship of our water resources, infrastructure, and environment.

3 people like this
Posted by Gunn Papa
a resident of Greater Miranda
on Oct 6, 2020 at 1:30 pm

Gunn Papa is a registered user.

Just voted no. Going to drop off my ballot at Mitchell.

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