March 21, 2017

HF 484/SF 456 A Gamble Not Worth Taking

Legislative Overreach

  • This legislation stands in stark contrast to Home Rule (the right for local self-government).
  • Iowa Code Chapter 388, states that a city may establish or dispose of a city utility, but it is subject to the approval of the voters of the city.
  • This legislation takes the right to vote out of the hands of the citizens of Des Moines, West Des Moines, and Urbandale.
  • In a recent survey of the Des Moines metro, 88% of registered voters said that people who live in the community should have final say over whether to remove an independent utility.
  • The poll results mirror the results of the West Des Moines vote in 2003, on whether or not to dissolve its independent water utility.

Regionalization is already Underway and should not be forced

  • Safe drinking water is a public health issue, and should not be gambled.
  • Regionalization needs to be done in a thoughtful and meaningful manner.
  • Des Moines Water Works is open to and has been actively participating in regionalization discussions for the past few years.
  • It is not necessary for the legislature to create a study committee to examine regionalization because one already exists.  It’s called CIRDWC – Central Iowa Regional Drinking Water Commission.
  • CIRDWC has already completed a regionalization study, and is now in the final stages of a 20-year forecast of the water needs in central Iowa.
  • CIRDWC already provides every metro community with a seat at the table.  This legislative action would not only duplicate and confuse ongoing efforts, but also disregard the work that has already be done.

HF 484 is a mess

  • It takes the management of delivering safe and affordable drinking water from professionals and puts in the hands of politicians.
  • HF 484, as written, has no plan, no mechanism for funding, no assurance that technical experts will be involved.
  • The bill has been changed numerous times; it has had new amendments and language added and then deleted.  The 500,000 people who rely on Des Moines Water Works have been left in the dark.
  • Water utility boards were set up independent from city councils for a reason – to protect a public health necessity from politics.  Simply stated, it is an independent local water utility owned by its customers and it works, and has worked for 100 years.
Posted by: Laura Sarcone 9 Comments
Labels: , , , Posted in Board of Trustees, History, Infrastructure, Public Policy, Source Water, Water Quality, Water Treatment

9 Responses to “HF 484/SF 456 A Gamble Not Worth Taking”

  1. March 21, 2017 at 5:07 pm, Joy Abuhl said:

    Keep politics out of our drinking water!!!!


  2. March 22, 2017 at 7:58 am, Michaela Fisher said:

    Life is Water.


  3. March 22, 2017 at 10:23 am, Carol Krings said:

    Drinking water is extremely important and more in the future it must be protected!


  4. March 22, 2017 at 10:27 am, Carol Krings said:

    Protect our water it is and will be in the future the most important resource we have do not gamble with our drinking water


  5. March 22, 2017 at 12:58 pm, derma rivera said:

    Stop the bill


  6. March 24, 2017 at 2:29 pm, Julie Q-A said:

    There is no legitimate reason for this bill. It is poorly written and unnecessary Sounds like someone wants to make money rather than protect OUR water. We need to remember that it is supposed to be up to us, the residents of the community not money hungry developers or politicians.


  7. March 29, 2017 at 3:45 pm, David K said:

    Tell us who to call. Bill Stowe is right and now the Iowa special interest farm machine is coming to get him. I just heard an ad on 100.3 “The Bus” attacking him and supporting this Regional Water Authority plan. Complete crap. I’m a registered Republican. Tell me who to call and I will let them have it. If Dow Chemical was dumping nitrates in our rivers, everybody would be going absolutely berzerk over it. But oh no! Its our farmers and everybody knows America needs farmers! Farming is an industry just like any other and should be held accountable for their actions.


    • March 30, 2017 at 8:12 am, Laura Sarcone said:

      Call your State representatives at (515) 281-3221 and tell them to STOP playing politics with your drinking water, and vote NO on HF 484


  8. April 25, 2017 at 1:02 am, AmyD said:

    Des Moines has the BEST water BECAUSE of Bill Stowe! Stop the petty nonsense and leave our water alone! We the people do not want politics in our drinking water — politics is POISON and will RUIN our good quality, reasonably priced water supply! Make the farmers pay for the crap they dump in our water upstream — if it was a factory dumping crap into the water, they would be fined, penalized, and made to pay for cleanup!!! Farmers are no different — make them either keep their chemicals out of our water or pay to clean up their mess!!! Call your State Reps and let them know that their continued existence in the legislature depends on YOUR VOTE, which they will NOT have if they vote FOR HF 484!!!


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