Clean and Affordable Water for All

Water is our most essential public resource and must be publicly protected and managed for all of our needs and for future generations. Every human should have clean water in California and our nation. Because many do not, I worked to help pass a law that makes it the goal of the State to achieve this objective. Yet hundreds if not thousands of families in our district still lack clean drinking water. It is time our government makes a commitment to provide clean water for all of our people.

Our federal government must again invest in helping communities build water treatment systems for communities. Many of our pipes and systems today were built with support from federal dollars from the New Deal that continued through the 1980s. Water infrastructure is very costly, and it is time we bring those dollars back to help local and state government.

I strongly oppose water privatization and here in our district we have many specific examples of its failures.

On the Monterey Peninsula, residents have suffered from the highest water rates in the nation. For decades Cal-Am, a private water company, has owned and mismanaged the system. In 2018 I worked with Public Water Now, a local advocacy group to help pass Measure J and begin the process of making their water system publicly owned, like 85% of the other water systems in California.

Cal-Am is now attempting to push through a $1 billion desalination plant that is unnecessary. Monterey One Water has a recycled water plan in place that can provide all the water the Peninsula needs at a fraction of the cost. Cal Am’s plan would double residential water rates and inflate the eventual cost of purchasing the company. The project would also destroy seven acres of sand dunes in Marina and would promote seawater intrusion and the contamination of Marina’s groundwater. I was recently hired by Public Water Now to help continue to work with the community to achieve public ownership of their water and defeat the Cal Am Desal project.