During the past year, the issue of fair and affordable water rates for all classes of water users has taken center stage as El Dorado Irrigation District (EID) and Georgetown Divide Public Utility District (GDPUD) have each been sued by ratepayers who claim that the agencies’ water rates violate provisions of California’s Constitution that voters approved by initiative in 1996 (Proposition 218).

 

EDCARP has studied this issue over the course of 2018, and has authored a new research paper, titled Water Rates and Proposition 218: Misuse of a Taxpayer Protection Threatens El Dorado County’s Rural Character. We reviewed court filings and other public records, and consulted with knowledgeable elected officials, agency managers, and attorneys.

 

With respect to the lawsuit against EID, we have concluded that the lawsuit represents a misuse of Proposition 218 and an existential threat to El Dorado County’s family farms, agricultural businesses, and rural character. Furthermore, the legal arguments in the lawsuit are identical to arguments made repeatedly by one of EID’s own directors.

 

The GDPUD lawsuit involves different issues and is in a more preliminary stage; at this time EDCARP has not formed any conclusions about the merits or potential impacts of that lawsuit.

 

Read the research paper here:  Water Rates and Proposition 218: Misuse of a Taxpayer Protection Threatens El Dorado County’s Rural Character