League of Women Voters of California
City of Stockton
Charter Ammendment - Majority Approval Required
9,966 / 59.8% Yes votes ...... 6,713 / 40.2% No votes
Index of all Measures
|Information shown below: Impartial Analysis | Arguments ||
AMENDMENT TO THE STOCKTON MUNICIPAL CODE TO REQUIRE A PUBLIC VOTE ON ACTIONS(S) BY THE CITY COUNCIL TO SELL, TRANSFER, LEASE OR ENCUMBER ANY PART OR INTEREST IN CITY UTILITIES OR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT IN EXCESS OF FIVE MILLION DOLLARS WITH ANY PRIVATE OR FOR-PROFIT AGENCY FOR THE OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE OR COLLECTION OF REVENUE FOR CITY UTILITIES
The Stockton City Council, upon receipt of a duly certified initiative petition, has placed this Measure on the March 4, 2003, ballot to amend the Stockton Municipal Code to add Section 3-103 to Division 1 of Part IX of Chapter 3 to provide for a public vote and approval by a majority of voters of the City of Stockton on any action by the Council to sell, transfer, lease, or otherwise encumber any part of or any interest in City utilities. In addition, a public vote would be required for the City to enter into any agreement in excess of five million dollars ($5,000,000) that assigns any aspect of the operation and maintenance, or the collection of revenue for, City utilities to any private or for-profit entity. An election would be required to be called at the next general municipal election occurring at least forty-five (45) days after the action by the Council, or at a special election held not less than sixty (60) days after action by the Council. This Measure defines "City utilities" to mean every component and facility of the water storage, treatment and delivery system and the wastewater and stormwater collection, storage, treatment, and discharge systems of the City of Stockton.
This initiative Measure, if approved, would adopt an ordinance that would add a new section to the Municipal Code that would prohibit the sale, transfer, lease, encumbrance of any part or interest in City utilities (as defined) and would restrict the Council's ability to authorize contracts or agreements in excess of $5 million that assigns any aspect of the operation and maintenance or collection of revenue for City utilities to any private or for-profit entity without a vote of the electorate.
This Measure provides only a definition of "City utilities"; it does not define other terms set forth in the Measure. In so far as the Measure contains terms that may be subject to various meanings and interpretations such as, "sell," "transfer," "lease" or "encumber" and "water storage, treatment and delivery system" and "wastewater and stormwater collection, storage, treatment, and discharge systems," the City Council can enact legislation to provide definitions and policy directives to facilitate the implementation of this Measure, so long as they are not in conflict with the intent of the Measure itself.
This Measure would require a majority vote of the voters and would become effective upon the City Council's acceptance of the final election results.
If you desire a copy of Measure F, please call the Stockton City Clerk's Office at (209) 937-8459, and a copy will be mailed to you at no cost.
|Arguments For Measure F||Arguments Against Measure F|
|ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF MEASURE F
Contracting with a private or for-profit corporation to perform the functions of the Stockton Municipal Utilities Department and to maintain the citizen-owned assets should require approval by a vote of the people. Oversight of our drinking water, our sewer and stormwater systems and our delta environment affects the health and safety of all Stockton citizens and is a community responsibility. The City of Stockton has recently proposed a water contract that is a monumental twenty-year decision, and those who are most affected, the people of Stockton, should have a say in this decision. Contracting out these services gives up the operation and maintenance of our water utilities to a multinational conglomerate with no local accountability and whose bottom line is profit for its share holders. It is the people of Stockton who paid for and own the Stockton municipal utilities system, and any "profit" from our municipal utilities should be used to improve the system rather than to flow to other states or countries. A vote of "yes" on this measure will ensure that any actions to contract out by Stockton City Councils must be approved by a vote of the people of Stockton.
Concerned Citizens Coalition of Stockton
/s/ Sylvia Kothe /s/ Dale E. Stocking
Vote NO on Measure F
The City of Stockton contracts with the private sector for operation and/or maintenance of various municipal services whenever it will save taxpayers or ratepayers money. All contracts are awarded based upon a competitive process and all contracts over a minimal dollar amount must be approved by your elected City Council.
The City overseas each private contractor's performance to make sure performance standards specified in the contract are met. Significant penalties may be imposed when performance does not meet standards.
Contracting with the private sector does not reduce accountability. Each contractor is accountable to assigned City staff, and City staff, through the City Manager, is accountable to your elected City Council.
Independent analysis has shown that contracting with the private sector for operation and maintenance of the City's water, sewer and storm drainage system will save ratepayers many millions of dollars over time.
A NO vote on Measure F will allow the City Council to continue to do its job and save you money.
/s/ Gary A. Podesto /s/ Gloria Nomura /s/ Ed Stockton
|ARGUMENT AGAINST MEASURE F
Measure F will unnecessarily tie the City's hands in regard to the management if its municipal utility operations.
Measure F is a back-door attempt to prevent the City from entering into a contract with a private company for the operation and maintenance of the City's water, wastewater and stormwater utilities. This contract could save the City approximately $177 million that would result in significant ratepayer savings.
Measure F would establish a blanket prohibition against the sell, transfer, lease or encumbrance of any part or any interest in the City's utilities without a vote of electorate.
Measure F is nothing but a thinly veiled attempt to stop a contract process that has been under discussion and open for public scrutiny for over two years
Measure F, would require an election should the City desire to "sell, transfer, lease, or otherwise encumber any part of or any interest in "City utilities" or enter into any agreement in excess of $5 million. The cost to conduct an election can range from $275,000 - $325,000. In addition, the time involved conducting an election and certifying the results (a minimum of 3 # 4 months) could adversely impact the City's ability to timely perform vital functions and services relative to its utility services.
Measure F is poorly drafted and will only result in disagreements, disputes, and possibly even lawsuits regarding its interpretation.
The City Council has been entrusted by the citizens of Stockton to carry out the business of the City and to establish policies in its best interest. The City Council should not be handcuffed by Measure F in carrying out its responsibilities.
Measure F is not good government.
Vote No on Measure F.
/s/ Gary A. Podesto
Measure F is a safeguard to confirm # by public vote # that the City Council makes wise decisions on behalf of Stockton's municipal water utilities.
The City Council waited until the 11th hour to make information on the proposed private water contract available to the public # and then only due to public pressure. The public learned that ratepayer savings were based on incomplete information and projected capital projects. In fact, contracting with a for-profit company could result in greater costs than continued city operation.
Elections are needed ONLY if the City attempts to contract with a private company to perform the functions of Stockton's Water Utilities # and ONLY for contracts in excess of $5 million dollars. Costly special elections should not be needed, and the public can vote their preferences at the next regularly scheduled general election.
Measure F is an initiative petition signed by over 18,000 Stocktonians and is a front-door action, not a "veiled attempt." Citizens were trying to send a message to the City Council to let the public have a say before a 20-year public-private contract is signed. Instead of listening, the Mayor and City Council majority twice voted NOT to let the citizens of Stockton have a say prior to the contract signing. This was not in the citizens' "best interest." This was not "good government."
VOTE YES on Measure F to have a voice in your future.
Concerned Citizens Coalition of Stockton
/s/ Sylvia Kothe, Director, League of Women Voters of San
Joaquin County/s/ Patrick Johnston, Former California State Senator /s/ Joan Darrah, Stockton City Mayor 1990 # 1996 /s/ Ann Johnston, Stockton City Council Member 1994 # 2002 /s/ Patrick Ikeda, San Joaquin Valley Chapter President, SEIU Local 790