Mandatory hookup on county docket
Ellisville Utility Boondoggle Continues
Columbia County, FL
(posted March 25, 2010 04:45 pm)
The Ellisville utility boondoggle continues as Jack
Berry protégé, Dist. III Com Jody DuPree has partnered
with Com Ronald Williams in closing out public comment
and keeping the County
Utility Rate Study under wraps for over a week.
The County Commission, driven by the need to pander
to the county "good ole boy" developers has put the
needs of the taxpayers on the back burner.
The county utility rate study, dated March 10, was
not made available at the last special meeting on March
11. The county claimed that it was not ready. As of 6pm
last night, the County had still not posted the study on
the County web site, as required by the County Charter.
Ronald Williams closes the hearing to public comment
Board Chairman and longtime Com Ronald Williams has
closed tonight's special meeting for public comment on
the rate study and mandatory hook-up.
One of the primary justifications of the County for
not doing business with the Lake City Regional Utility
was the County's claim that they could produce water for
"our customers" for less cost than Lake City.
For years the county has been hanging its hat on a
water rate of $1.77 per thousand gallons. These were old
numbers calculated in the boom times before the economy
Everyone knew these numbers wouldn't hold up in
today's economic climate, yet the county refused to
level with its residents and under the leadership of
Utility Committee Chairman, Com DuPree, who claimed to
be "stupid" and "uneducated" at every opportunity he
got, the county bulled forward at Ellisville without any
valid studies to support the continued development.
Com DuPree, like his mentor Jack Berry, shows a
distain for the Sunshine Laws of Florida which is second
to none in Florida.
All the discussions regarding the development of the
Mandatory Hook-up Ordinance that took place at the
Utility sub-sub Committee, were not noticed.
The latest figures are these.
Lake City charges $27.64 for 7,000 gallons of water.
The proposed county rate, the one that was, according
to the county, going to cost so much less is $28.88.
This proves once again that less is more, in Columbia
basic rate is based on 5,000 gallons per
Columbia County's basic rate is based on 4,000
gallons per month. The County doesn't explain how they
came up with these numbers and why it is 1,000 gallons
less per month.
By next year it is calculated that all county
taxpayers will be subsidizing the water rates at
In Lake City, the folks that use the water pay for
In Lake City, drinking water hook-up is not
Tonight, Columbia County is proposing to make it
mandatory, not only in Ellisville, but everywhere in the
county. This means if a county water line runs past your
property, you have to hook up.
The County is threatening to lay water lines parallel
to Lake City's water lines, forcing residents to hook up
to the county system. They would not be required to hook
up to the city water system.
Lake City has recently removed its water availability
While it is a little murky, it appears that Columbia
County has instituted an availability fee.
Columbia County is reaching its hand into the pocket
of every tax payer in the county to support the
Tonight at 7pm, Columbia County's homeless County
Commission will be meeting at the School Board
Administration Complex. The meeting is to continue a
public hearing of the Mandatory Hook-up Ordinance. Of
course, the public cannot speak.