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Lodi’s tough choice: public vs. private

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Posted: Tuesday, November 22, 2011 12:00 am | Updated: 7:43 am, Tue Nov 22, 2011.

Lodi officials are facing a choice. They have to staff the nearly completed water treatment plant, and soon.

"It's a $36 million, highly technical facility, and it needs the best people to run it," Mayor Bob Johnson said.

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  • roy bitz posted at 8:58 pm on Tue, Nov 22, 2011.

    roy bitz Posts: 503

    Finally---Will this plant really provide better quality water and will it make a significant impact on the ground water overdraft?
    I don't believe so.
    The polluted river water must be "heavily" chlorinated before it can be safely blended with our "occassionally" chlorinated ground water. This water will not be as good as our great tasting ground water.
    The ground water over draft is 200,000 acre feet a year.
    This plant will filter and chlorinate 6,000 acre feet of river water a year---3% of the over draft problem. A drop in the bucket.
    One or two new vineyards will use more than what this plant will provide.
    CIty leaders used the over draft issue to justify this massive costly project but the data does not support their position.
    Please---someone---Mr. Hansen, Mr.Johnson, Mr. Katzakian--LNS--anyone---show us all the costs and all the benefit of this massive project..

  • roy bitz posted at 8:36 pm on Tue, Nov 22, 2011.

    roy bitz Posts: 503

    On another note--I believe rate payers "deserve" an itemized statement of all the money that has been spent on this massive project so far and what it will cost over the next thirty years.
    What has been spent on infrastructure so far including raw hook up and Mills dig.
    How much has been spent on preparing the plant site-removing oak trees etc.
    How much for all the planning consultants and city employee admin time.
    What is the total cost of debt service on the forty six million dollar loan

  • roy bitz posted at 8:05 pm on Tue, Nov 22, 2011.

    roy bitz Posts: 503

    By now this decision has been made---it was probably made long ago--I hope our councilmen insisted on contracting with a private concern rather than expanding the size of the city work force.
    I believe it was wrong for the city to have the opportunity to compete for this business because the city had the advantage of seeing the competiing bids before submitting their proposal.
    There is also the issue of accountability. If the city employee makes a costly mistake, we pay for it. If the contractor makes a costly mistake or is found to be in violation of State regualtions---the contrractor pays.
    By going with a contractor the city limits our liability and operational costs are pretty much fixed.
    I believe more city ---county--state and federal services should be contracted to competitive private enterprise.

  • Darrell Baumbach posted at 3:59 pm on Tue, Nov 22, 2011.

    Darrell Baumbach Posts: 9405

    We think our people will have a greater inclination to maintain the facility," said Sandelin.

    Private entity will lose contract and profit if they do not maintain the facility.... I think private entity will have more incentive to hire quality employees who can be fired if they do not perform. This makes it more likely to maintain. City employees are more difficult to fire simply for not doing a very good job.

  • Robert Chapman posted at 11:07 am on Tue, Nov 22, 2011.

    Bob Chapman Posts: 997

    Despite the fact that I have been retired for quite a spell, I might consider taking a job with the COL at this plant. I could use the $100K/yr salary and free medical, dental, vision and a big pension when I re-retire. Where do I sign up?



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