Saturday, November 7, 2009

Soak 'Em

Shouldn't the water rate increase difference between the City and the suburbs be a disincentive for persons or businesses to locate in the suburbs? I can accept higher water rates as a City resident. But suburban rates should be substantially higher, to dissuade further sprawl. Shouldn't the cost of water be one of the main tools used in nudging greater density and more environmentally conscious development? [Kind of like the cost of gasoline, but that's for another day.]

The current City proposal wants to increase the City 28.5 percent and the suburbs 36 percent. The average City resident will pay about $.47 more per day. While the average suburban resident will pay $.59 more per day. Hardly enough to discourage unsustainable development.

Yet, even this minuscule increase has the suburbs up in arms. They feel they shouldn't have to pay more to "support Milwaukee's general fund, since they would see no benefits from more money for general city operations."

Yes, I guess the suburban leaders are really that ignorant. They believe their growth was in spite of and not due to or aided by Milwaukee. Freeways do nothing to help cities, since they allow the majority of traffic to bypass city streets. Yet, we keep building them to the benefit of the suburbs. Their shortsightedness and selfishness is really appalling.

Rather than offering free water to attract businesses to the City, they could just put in place a rate structure which would make the City the obviously better choice. Thus, making such a site selection decision a no-brainer because of the evident savings.

If the suburbs want/need Milwaukee water, I say, "Soak 'em!"

No comments: