A debtor way of life (December 31, 2015)

Lee Bell’s understanding of Pat and Chuck Hanson’s proposed ballot measure is different than mine. Where Bell seems to be saying that the initiative would allow the issuance of bonds to support the Town’s hostile takeover of Apple Valley Ranchos, I think the intent of the initiative is to constrain Town leaders from obtaining such a bond without putting it to a vote of the ratepayers (Debt for water takeover, Daily Press, December 31, 2015).

So far, the Town has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in its attack on Ranchos, with little transparency and no accountability. In fact, some council members have said off-the-record that their re-election means there is no need for a separate vote on encumbering residents to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars, despite the fact that support for the takeover seems to come from a small minority of Apple Valley residents.

I agree with Bell that the amount of debt proposed is ruinous, and I reject those who cite mob rule as a valid reason to seize a perfectly good company. However, a vote by the citizenry on this matter is better than the alternative, which is to allow the Town council to continue its feckless actions unfettered.

Greg Raven is Co-Chair of Apple Valley Citizens for Government Accountability, and is concerned about quality of life issues.

Published: Daily Press, January 3, 2016