NOVATO – The Novato Sanitary District has kept details of plans to outsource control over a new, $90 million wastewater plant largely secret from the public, and is now only holding a “public” meeting in response to intense and increasing criticism from the community, a citizens group charged today.
The NSD board has scheduled a public hearing Monday, July 20, at 6:30 p.m. behind the Margaret Todd Senior Center at 1560 Hill Road.
But Alliance of Concerned Citizens of Novato said it’s way too late, and way too little.
“The board scheduled a public meeting only after we have begged them for it for months and the lack of transparency has become obvious. But, it’s nothing more than a ‘dog and pony show,'” said ACCN in a statement. “Because the public hearing is only a week before the final decision, it’s not enough time for a concerned public to review the plans.”
ACCN has continued to run a series of commercials on CNN and Fox News questioning missing money and a FBI/EPA raid at its sewer district. The latest round starts today. The Sanitary District Board of Directors has claimed in its own ads the information in the commercials is misleading, but has not denied the allegations outright.
ACCN said the move to “out-source” or privatize local jobs to a foreign company will lead to higher sewer rates for Novato citizens, loss of local control and pollution in the Novato wetlands and San Francisco Bay.
The TV ads alert the community to big questions about how the Novato Sanitary District is being run, including a FBI/EPA raid on the offices – rumored to be because of improper dumping of waste water – and more than $500,000 found missing from the Novato Sanitary bank account. Both cases are still open.