Sacramento, CA – The State Assembly voted 51-22 to send AB 240 by Assembly Member Anthony Rendon to Governor Brown for approval. AB 240 would make mutual water companies more transparent and accountable to the residents that receive water from them. The bill also allows the Water Replenishment District of Southern California to potentially receive millions in grants to improve drinking water quality in Maywood.
The residents of the City of Maywood receive water from three private mutual water companies that currently are not subject to comprehensive oversight. Maywood residents have for years expressed concerns about the quality of the water they receive, citing problems with discoloration, odors and taste. Various studies have found the presence of manganese and other unhealthy elements in the water. Some residents have even complained about the physical illnesses that have resulted from bathing in the water. The bill requires mutual water companies to allow those people who drink their water to attend their board meetings and see 5 documents, such as board minutes and an annual financial review.
A deteriorating water supply system is suspected of being the primary cause of the problem. A substantial portion of Maywood's residents are renters and do not own real property in Maywood. Because of this, they are not stockholders or members of the mutual water companies that serve Maywood and cannot have any influence to make these companies fix the system in order to improve the water quality. AB 240 garnered strong bipartisan support to overcame intense and unjustified opposition from mutual water companies that sought to keep their operations secret from the residents in their service area.
"The residents of Maywood have waited far too long to drink, cook and bathe in clean water. I am grateful that the Legislature voted overwhelmingly to support the residents of Maywood by sending this bill to Governor Brown," stated Assembly Member Anthony Rendon.
For more info on the water problems in Maywood, watch this video:
(Sacramento) -- Legislation from Assemblymember Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood) to start the process necessary to improve Maywood's drinking water supply is moving through the state capitol. Assembly Bill 240 expands the transparency of the three mutual water companies that currently provide water to the City of Maywood by requiring them to comply with stronger disclosure and public access to records, meetings, adoption of a budget and audits. This will give regular residents the power to participate in the governance of mutual water companies and allow them to take a more active role in improving their local water quality. "I continue to uphold my commitment to ensure that the people of Maywood receive clean and safe drinking water, and AB 240 will give them what they deserve," stated Assemblymember Rendon. Here's more in this Assembly Web Report.
Contact: Bill Wong, (916) 319-3692