MARIN COUNTY'S NEWS
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(415)868-1600 - (415)868-0502(fax) - P.O. Box 31, Bolinas, CA, 94924
"Absentee" Parcels Cast Flood Fee Vote Into Question
By Louise Mathews
The March 19, 2007, Ross Valley Flood Protection and Watershed Program Owner's Listing and Fee Amount lists 15,010 parcel numbers, owner's name, site address, and Fee amount.
Joyce Vollmer, Director Strategic Communications at MIG, used the Owner's Listing to mail 15,010 Flood Fee ballots as verified under perjury.
Several people did not receive a ballot so I investigated. I audited the Owner's Listing against each Marin
County Assessment Roll for the parcels in the Flood Zone 9 Watershed.
¥ 747 parcels are not in the Owner's Listing and so are not on the mailing list to receive a voting ballot. The Flood Fee is based on "One Parcel, One Vote".
¥ 453 owners never received a Notice of the Fee or a ballot upon which to vote, resulting in what Timothy Bittle, Legal Director at Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association terms "injury".
¥ The annual Fee revenue of the 747 "absentee" parcels isn't part of the $2,164,130 Supervisor Hal Brown stated would be collected. A lowball revenue estimate for the "absentee" parcels listed below is about $200,000.
Is it happenstance that the Financial Working Group (Town Managers working with politicians) would include Ross' Lagunitas Country Club 7 acre parcel yet exclude its adjacent 16 acre parcel? Is it happenstance to happen hundreds of times?
Are County and Town officials culpable for further abuses other than concealing taxpayer revenue from public disclosure?
County and Town officials should be condemned for premeditated exploitation of taxpayers, voting rights' infringement, and for taking no corrective action when asked to do so by their constituents.
Assume that the worst is yet to come; you won't be disappointed.
Louise L. Mathews
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