Monday, September 20, 2010

262 / Water Challenges

To the degree that we "legislate" into existence the world in which we most immediately live (and that is, of course, my contention), decisions about how such world-creating legislation is accomplished assume a great significance.

Specifically, the persons we select to represent us, at every level of government, assume "our" legislative powers, and use those powers in the way they see fit. In California, there are political antidotes to this wholesale delegation of our legislative powers to elected officials (the referendum, recall, and the initiative), but these techniques are difficult to use, and we basically "legislate" our world through the choices we make in selecting our "representatives."

I was once a member of the Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors (one of five elected representatives who ran the County). The five Supervisors routinely referred to themselves as "the County," and that's the way others referred to us, too. And, in every practical sense, as far as "government" was concerned, we were "the County."

The powers we cede, when we elect people to represent us, are vast. We should be more aware of that, for our representatives are given truly plenary power to act (in our names) to create the realities they think are best.

For residents of the City of Santa Cruz, which is where I live, and for all those who receive their water from the City of Santa Cruz Water Department (and this includes not only residents of the City, but farmers on the North Coast, and residents and businesses in Pasatiempo, Live Oak, and parts of the City of Capitola), it would make sense to know how the current crop of candidates intends to use our governmental powers with respect to water policy.

If you are interested in what those seeking elected office will do with your power, with respect to water, once they've got it, you should mark your calendar for a "Water Challenges" forum, sponsored by the Community Water Coalition, Ecology Action, Transition Santa Cruz, and other groups.

The forum is scheduled for Wednesday, October 6th, from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m., at the Louden Nelson Community Center, 301 Center Street, Santa Cruz.

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