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Ojai Eminent Domain- Agenda 21 Related

Monday, February 25, 2013 15:52
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Fellow Concerned Citizen,
My name is Lauren Rowlands, and I work for Randle Communications, organizing coalitions in Ojai to oppose the proposed takeover of Golden State Water. As you might know, the Casitas Municipal Water District (Casitas) has taken steps to forcibly acquire Golden State’s Ojai property by eminent domain.  Political activists, specifically Ojai FLOW, are running a dishonest campaign to convince Casitas that all Ojai residents want a new water provider, despite the fact that Golden State has repeatedly said its property is not for sale and fully intends to defend its property rights in court.  


The basis for Casitas’ power grab is an Ojai FLOW petition signed by 1,800 residents of Ojai.  Many residents like you have been grossly misinformed by Ojai FLOW’s misleading claims; for two years residents were told it would not cost more than $33 million to purchase the water system but now we know it will cost much more. Unless Casitas hears otherwise, they will vote in two weeks to raise your property taxes by millions of dollars.  Here’s what you need to know:


At FLOW’s direction, Casitas will hold a public hearing on March 13th at 6:00pm at Matilija Middle School (703 El Paseo Road, Ojai) where residents can give their opinion on the proposal.  The Board intends to vote on a proposal to issue up to $60 million in bonds to purchase the water system, which would be paid for by every property owner via a 30-year parcel tax.  Although the Ojai FLOW petition says the proposed water bond would not cost more than $33 million, Casitas’ plan will cost up to $60 million.  What does this mean?  Look at the table below and see for yourself what this tax means for you.


Parcel Square Footage
Annual Payment
Total 30 year tax payments
(includes a 2% annual increase
as proposed) 
Single Family Detached Unit
43,560 Sq. Ft. or greater
Single Family Detached Unit
22,000 to less than 43,560 Sq. Ft.
Single Family Detached Unit
10,000 to less than 22,000 Sq. Ft.
Single Family Detached Unit
Less than 10,000 Sq. Ft.
Condominium Unit
Multifamily Attached Property


The worst part about this proposal is that there’s no guarantee your water rates will be lower if Casitas takes over.  Casitas has never said that it will charge rates similar to those of their existing customers.  I’m urging you to consider the implications of a forcible takeover from a taxpayer’s prospective–not an activist’s prospective.  We need to act quickly to stop this tax increase.  I have included my contact info below. I’m happy to answer any questions you might have.  Please feel free to circulate my contact information.  You have a voice, and together we can stop this!
Thank you so much,
Lauren Rowlands, MPPA
Outreach Coordinator
Randle Communications
P:  805-217-2939


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Total 1 comment
  • Sonia Nordenson

    What a bunch of baloney, Lauren Rowlands! We know that you work for Tony Strickland. What some people won’t do for money . . .

    Sorry, but we people of Ojai (who actually LIVE in Ojai and pay Golden State’s outrageous water bills) are going to take back our water.

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