Water woes | SummitDaily.com

Water woes


Denver Water, the owner of Dillon Reservoir and major water rights in the Blue River Basin, is taking a pounding in the Denver papers for its rate hike proposals.Some customers, and at least one clueless columnist, complain that because they conserved water in the recent drought, their “reward” is having to pay more for water.A couple issues are in play. First of all, Denver Water’s rates are cheap and never encouraged conservation in the first place. Its customers, a number of them no doubt Summit County second homeowners, deserve a pat on the back for taking the moral high ground and conserving.Lower revenues are an unintended consequence of conservation but indicative of the inherent problem of cheap water.The second is a water-use ethic in Denver and the Front Range that pays no heed to growth and future water demands, nevermind the belief that landscaping that belongs in a temperate, rainy state like North Carolina, is accepted as the norm.There’s yet another reason Denver Water needs bolstered revenues. It is working hard to take more Summit and Grand county water and to build more reservoir space.Denver Water is budgeting for legal fights and construction.So, while we sympathize with Denver Water’s revenue plight and the confusion it faces from customers, we find it hard to produce tears. Denver Water has a long way to go to educate its customers about the realities of where they live – if it has the will to do so at all.We know it has the will to come to the headwater counties to suck away more of the West’s most precious resource – water.

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