Our Reply to VCStar Editorial on Measure M

Earlier this year Oxnard residents rallied to help us qualify an initiative for the ballot which, if adopted, would repeal the city's excessive 87% wastewater (sewer) rate increase.  The effort was successful, and the initiative is now on the November 8 ballot as Measure M.  Remember to vote YES to pay LESS!

On October 20, the Ventura County Star editorial board published an opinion piece urging a "no" vote on Measure M.  The editorial board incorrectly called Measure M a referendum, though it is an initiative.  (A referendum would switch the meaning of the yes/no votes.)  They also mistakenly claim that Moving Oxnard Forward was created just to oppose the rate hikes.  We existed prior to the rate increases, and we were actively working on other ideas for improving our city when this issue arose.

We look forward to the VCStar publishing our response shown below:

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Ballot Argument for Measure M

Four long-time residents and pillars of our community joined Aaron Starr as co-authors and submitted their ballot argument in favor of Measure M.  This will appear in the voter guide that gets mailed to every registered voter in Oxnard.


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Partially Impartial

The City of Oxnard is playing fast and loose with the rules ... again.

California Elections Code 9280 requires the City Attorney to draft an impartial analysis of our initiative to be printed in the voter handbook. Here is what it states (we have underlined portions for emphasis):

Whenever a city measure qualifies for a place on the ballot, the governing body may direct the city elections official to transmit a copy of the measure to the city attorney, unless the organization or salaries of the office of the city attorney are affected. The city attorney shall prepare an impartial analysis of the measure showing the effect of the measure on the existing law and the operation of the measure. The analysis shall include a statement indicating whether the measure was placed on the ballot by a petition signed by the requisite number of voters or by the governing body of the city.

If the measure affects the organization or salaries of the office of the city attorney, the governing board may direct the city elections official to prepare the impartial analysis. The analysis shall be printed preceding the arguments for and against the measure. The analysis shall not exceed 500 words in length.

In the event the entire text of the measure is not printed on the ballot, nor in the voter information portion of the sample ballot, there shall be printed immediately below the impartial analysis, in no less than 10-point bold type, a legend substantially as follows: "The above statement is an impartial analysis of Ordinance or Measure ____. If you desire a copy of the ordinance or measure, please call the elections official's office at (insert telephone number) and a copy will be mailed at no cost to you."

Today, the city made available the City Attorney's Impartial Analysis of Measure "M" and this is what it says:

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KEYT Coverage of City Council Meeting

KEYT news coverage of Tuesday's City Council Meeting. 

Oxnard City Council Votes Against Water Rate Hike For Now.

Failure to Communicate

"What we've got here is failure to communicate."
-- Strother Martin as the prison warden in Cool Hand Luke

As reported in the Ventura County Star (Oxnard decides against raising water rates at least for now), the Oxnard City Council voted Tuesday night to not increase water rates by 66% over the next four years ... at least not yet. (Not to be confused with the sewer rate increase adopted last January and whose repeal is scheduled to be on the November ballot.)

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Peeing on the Electric Fence

“There are three kinds of men. The ones that learn by readin’. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.”
--Will Rogers

And in the case of the Oxnard City Council, it appears they need to pee on the electric fence more than once.

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Heading for the Ballot

Media Coverage:

Ventura County Star: SOAR, wastewater rate repeal to appear on Oxnard November ballot

"Initiatives concerning open-space laws and the repeal of a wastewater rate increase will appear on the Nov. 8 ballot in Oxnard following approval by the City Council this week.

The council voted to place the Wastewater Rate Repeal Initiative on the ballot, a measure headed by resident Aaron Starr. The initiative, which aims to roll back the utility rate increase approved by the council earlier this year, received the required 1,430 valid signatures to get on the ballot."

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We're Qualified for the Ballot!

A message from our President.


As reported in the Ventura County Star, we are delighted to report that the Ventura County Registrar of Voters has certified that our initiative, Repealing Oxnard's Increases of Wastewater Rates Act, has enough signatures to be placed on this November's ballot.

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Major Victory in Court Today


A message from our President.


This is the second time the city has attempted to use the courts to deprive Oxnard citizens of their right to vote and the second time they have failed.

Absent some other sneaky maneuver by the city council, this measure will be going to the ballot in November.

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Courtroom Cliffhanger

With less than one day's notice, we appeared in court this morning to oppose the City of Oxnard's attempt to deny you the right to vote on their 87% rate increase for wastewater ... after close to 4,000 of us signed petitions in only 16 days to put this on the ballot this November.
Kudos to our legal team for preparing their rapid response to City Hall's outrageous ploy. Even knowing that case law is on our side, it's not easy to react so quickly against a bully's sucker punch.
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