Raising a director’s compensation from $50 to $100 a meeting (including committee meetings) in 2013 hit a nerve.
By voting out two Idyllwild Water District incumbents last November, the community obviously wasn’t thrilled with some of the past board’s actions. Because doubling sewer fees (and water revenues are going up while consumption is going down, thanks to conservation) weren’t as welcoming to the community as that decision was to the board.
With such high rates now, some customers are questioning why directors get paid at all. So, why not revisit that issue? One of the new directors simply wanted to do that. He asked GM Tom Lynch to put it on the next agenda. Lynch had an inane reason to keep that off the agenda, unless the board itself voted it onto the agenda.
Last November, IWD customers voted in two challengers in place of two incumbents. Those two new directors spoke openly against the directors being compensated for attending meetings. One of the new directors won’t even accept the compensation.
Both challengers felt a seat on the board was a service to the community. Why, then, wouldn’t the GM simply place the issue on the agenda and let the board vote, instead of conjuring up an unnecessary rule (see story on facing page)?
I often think the motivation for non-transparent actions of governmental representatives or staff is either fear or hostility or both.
In this case, I think it’s both. But whatever the motivating factor, it isn’t rational and gives the impression that some of the people in charge of the local water and sewer district are operating with a self-serving vs. a community service mode of thinking.
Let’s get back to representing IWD customers.
Becky Clark, Editor